My maternal grandfather whistled ALL THE TIME. It was like a calling card. I never knew why he whistled all the time until he died a few years ago. My Dad shared a story during his sermon at the funeral about how my Grandfather didn’t have the best childhood. He liked to whistle and it made him happy. Whenever he wasn’t feeling happy he would whistle up a tune.
What started as a way to cheer himself up when he was sad became a lifelong way to share his joy with others. He learned a valuable lesson when he was a kid that your circumstances don’t get to determine your happiness.
Now, I’m not saying that there aren’t legitimate times to be sad or to ignore bad things in your life. What I am saying is that many times happiness is a choice.
The last few months have been wild. Locked up, no friends, no trips, just…nothing. None of the things that we love doing. Yet, in the midst of it we have found joy. We decided back in March that even though a lot of plans have been derailed that we would find a way to be joyful.
Yesterday we threw our dog, Jake, a birthday party for his 11th birthday.
Courtney made him a cake, we lit and blew out candles, and got on the floor for some pictures. It wasn’t the birthday adventure that we would have hoped for his 11th birthday. (Jake LOVES car trips and hiking.) But it was joyful nonetheless.
Just look at those smiles in the picture. PURE JOY. We chose that joy. We aren’t dependent on what is happening in our lives to find some joy to squeeze out of it.