I read a poem today ~ “My Dead Friends.” The poet asks her dead friends for counsel when she faces hard choices. And there’s a great answer from her dead friends: whatever leads/to joy, they always answer,/to more life and less worry.

That’s what I want to do — choose joy. Choose what will live best, even if it’s not what ‘should’ be done. I’ve never been very good at ‘should,’ anyway. Far better at play than protocol. But as I begin to sit down to breakfast w/ a milestone birthday, I am certain of only one thing: we are our daily choices, not simply our big decisions.

These days, I want my life to reflect the lightness of joy. I want to offer it up, spread it around, swim in it. And the funny thing? My definition has shifted over the years. When I was 20, ‘joy’ was the right boots, the right date, the right present.  These many years later? Joy is often very simple: the vivid orange of the orchids blooming in the breakfast room. Clean sheets at the end of the day. One perfect line in a poem, after an hour of work.

What brings you joy? Today, seek it out. Open tomorrow to more of it.  And think of making it a daily choice ~

More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

I know education intimately. I’ve worked w/ urban schools, k-university, since 1990. At the district, state, & national levels. I’ve met w/ officials from across the globe (literally: Africa, Europe, Australia…). I have educator friends & colleagues around the country. So keep that in mind. The pro-DeVos argument  is loaded w/ biased rhetoric. Let’s begin w/ […]

Reading Jessica Livingston’s ‘Sound of Silence‘ struck so many resonant chords it was like she was playing my song. A soundtrack to a current dilemma I’m waffling over. Which is…to FaceBook or not to FaceBook. Livingston articulates the downsides eloquently: I’m sick of being a target for every neocon who buys alt-right agitprop. I’m tired […]

In a month of giving thanks for everyday blessings, people sometimes assume that I’m not grateful for the big things: my home, my family. My material well-being. But the point to an entire month of giving thanks for ‘ordinary magic,’ is to remind each of us (me especially!) that in our lives, there is much […]

Today I’m grateful, in this month of 30 days to remember all we have to be thankful for, that I’m an aunt. Being an aunt is a gift someone else has to give you — no one gets to ‘pick’ it. And it’s nothing at all like being a sister, or a mother, or even […]