Today does not feel like a very happy day.
The oven is broken, so we can’t cook. The front panel fell off it out of the blue, leaving exposed heating parts. The replacement part is on order in the hopes it will be installed before Thanksgiving.
And this past weekend, in the midst of a cold, rainy, soccer tournament weekend, the hot water heater went out.
This is after the furnace started on fire and the washing machine ground to a halt too in the last few weeks.
Apparently as we were luxuriating in the fact we had heat, light, and could wash our clothes again, the universe thought we were getting a wee bit too big for our britches and declared that we should no longer cook or bathe.
And as fate would have it, today is the last day of my participation in the 100 Happy Days project.
I finished! I photographed and posted something that made me happy for each of the past 100 days.
Many of the days were pretty easy, as I went about my day I’d see something or do something special and post it with a brief description. Some days I’d know right away what I wanted to post, while others I’d have to think a little longer and harder.
A couple of days I forgot until late night and I’d have to figure something out before bed (like on Day 96). It wasn’t a great feeling to have to do that, and the temptation to skip it and double post the next day was high, but I resisted and discipline won out. I figured it was only 100 days I had to be disciplined about.
I think I accidentally missed posting on one day, possibly two, but I made up for it the next day. And I definitely bungled the numbers many many times along the way (it’s harder than you think trying to post on the fly and keep the day numbers right!).
But this was a project about happiness after all, not perfection, and the two are in no way related.
That’s the biggest lesson I took from this project.
When I look back through my photos, most of them are nothing special. They’re just average snapshots grabbed during the course of my usual days (mostly usual days, though there were some unique events in there like the day we spent in New York City or the day of the fire).
But there’s something really special about finding happiness in the everyday, right? Isn’t that a better foundation for happiness than the pursuit of more, the pursuit of better, the pursuit of greater?
I think so, and the mundane nature of my photos proves that it’s true for me.
On the 100 Happy Days site they say that 71% of people who begin the challenge don’t finish it. I’m very happy to be part of the 29% of finishers.
I encourage you to do this challenge, or find another way to document your happiness day in and day out. I think you’ll thank yourself when you reach the end.
Because the end is really the beginning, right?