Oprah had a show the other day about happiness, and I have been thinking about it ever since. The show was titled "Are You Happy?" She claimed that things like knowing your neighbors, watching less TV, and having close friends increases your happiness. Those have been true for me. However, she also claimed that having kids does not make you any happier. I disagree...and here is why:
Cal and Jack bring out this smile in my mom....extending past the lips to the eyes and eye brows. They seem to do this to everyone.
The boys also seem to bring out the kid in all of us. Dan and I like to be playful, but it rarely happens without a little encouragement. Calvin asked Dan and me individually to lay down in the entryway to play catch. He joined us for awhile.
But we still enjoyed playing together after he left. That was a pretty happy moment.
The boys seem to just make everyday happenings more fun. Cal was trying to put Jack's shoes on here while Jack was swinging/jumping around in the jumper. We all thought it was hilarious!
And watching Calvin say "hi" to Jack like this sure made preparing dinner a lot of fun!
Not to mention sweeping out leaves from the garage with this on the sideline =).
Maybe Oprah's conclusion about kids not making you happy is from a wrong definition of happiness. Sure, the boys make life much more complicated and much less about me, but they sure bring joy!
The show also brought up the nature of happiness as being either genetic or environmental. I'd say that this 6 month old shows that it is in all of us from the start. As we grow, it fades.
I am trying to learn to follow the recipe for happiness that the Bible teaches....trust. With the same trusting eyes with which Jack looks at me, I need to trust in the goodness and soverignty of God instead of trying to control everything myself. That may not make me happy as Oprah defines it, but it will bring joy and contentment. That is true happiness.