I’ll Be Happy When…

…fill in the blank.  We all say that.  I’ll be happy when the wonderful thing I’ve been waiting for happens.  The implication of those words is that until that wonderful thing happens I won’t be happy.  So we live our lives, day in, day out, waiting for that one thing that will make life perfect. Perhaps that thing will never arrive and we are condemning ourselves to a lifetime of, at best, not-quite-happy, and, at worst, downright misery.

www.mysmallstillvoice.wordpress.comSeveral decades ago, as I was walking my dogs one night in Central Park, completely wretched over an affair of the heart gone wrong, I had an epiphany.  This is how it went in my head:

Me: But I love him so much.  How he can ignore that?  How can he not be moved by the overwhelming love I have for him? 

My Small Still Voice (MSSV): Well, clearly he can.  So what?

Me: So what?  He’s my soul mate! How can he not feel that wonderful joy that I feel when I see him?  How can he not tremble with excitement the way I do when I see him? How can he be immune to all that?

MSSV: Do you feel the joy of that love whether he’s there or not?

Me: Yes!

MSSV: Do you tremble with excitement when you see him whether or not he’s trembling, too?

Me: Of course!

MSSV: Does his lack of equal response  make your feelings any less real or wonderful?

Me: NO!

MSSV: So, why not just be happy?  Why wait for him to make up his mind?  Why be miserable while you’re waiting for something that may or may not happen?  Your feelings are yours.  Do they make you happy?

Me:  Yes! My feelings make me very happy!

MSSV:  Those feelings are yours.  No one can take them away from you.  No one needs to validate them.  No one has to appreciate them to make them real. You’re happy feeling them and that’s real.

Me: But I love him, and I want him to love me back!

MSSV: I understand you love him.  I understand you want him to love you back.  The point is this:  you have your feelings; you have no control over WHAT you feel, or what he feels, or whether or not he wants to receive the gift you’re giving him.  What you DO have control over is how you MANAGE your feelings.  So enjoy your feelings.  Be happy just as you are.  And should he ever reciprocate, be happier still.  You already have your happiness, all you have to do is feel it unconditionally.


Yes, even when I was in my twenties, my small still voice was ancient.  I’ve faced many other affairs, of the heart and others, gone wrong, and I’ve been happy.  When I had my daughter, I was happier, but she didn’t have to make me happy.  Since my sweet husband came into my life, I’ve been happier, but he doesn’t have to make me happy.  Through the seemingly bleak times, I find that moment, that thing that brings a smile to my lips, laughter bursting forth in delighted surprise.  These are the moments that I cling to.  These are the moments with which I weave the fabric of my life.

And now you know why I never became a Romance writer!

32 thoughts on “I’ll Be Happy When…

  1. Margarita, you are singing my song — only you sing it louder and are much better at actually putting into practice on a regular basis. These things you write are the truth — the absolute — no question, no middle-ground — it simply IS. As far as you’re being a romance writer, thank God for that. There are so many “romance” stories where one (usually the woman) is always pining over something she cannot have when love is staring her right in the face. I like your idea of love WAY WAY better. ;). xo

  2. I wish I had been that wise in my 20s! This is so wise but that is you Margarita, our voice of wisdom. I’m happy to say, I’m just happy. Also, what up with not taking pics of that building??? That happened to me in a coffee shop in NYC. NYC thinks it’s so special! Which of course it is but don’t tell NYC that 🙂

    1. I wasn’t particularly wise in my 20s, Maggie. Or now for that matter. I do have a loud small still voice that just keeps getting louder and clearer. I’ve heard yours, too, my dear. It’s there!

      I know, we in NYC are so darned provincial when it comes to our place in the Universe! lol xoxoM

  3. Thanks for the reminder. The time is here, now. I still don’t know if I could figure out how to sustain the idea in a romantic pursuit, that I should have simple joy in the feelings of happiness upon musing on an object of affection even in unrequited love. That might be tricky. But it could work with some affirmations, etc.

    1. Thanks, JM. I think all souls are wise, and we each have a soul, so we’re all equally wise. We’re just not all in the same place when it comes to awareness of that. It’s a practice…xoxoM

  4. I had a similar time when I was younger. I was moping about over splitting with some girl then eventually I realised I was just looking at things from the wrong perspective. Some things go right in life, some go wrong. The best we can do is enjoy the good things and not get too carried away i.e. learn and move on, with the bad.

    Of course a few years (or more) later I met my wife, and we have our first child. It is difficult to be downbeat with a small child around, and I sure do not want my boy growing up to think his dad was some miserable **** (add your own word there).

    1. Ah, yes, having that child around is a great way to remember what roles we are modeling! And even the “right” and “wrong” are a matter of perspective, aren’t they? If things hadn’t gone “wrong” with the first girl, you might not have wound up with the RIGHT girl! xoxoM

      1. No, I think you got it right as you said it first: your son, the one you know and love now, would not have existed. You might have still had a son to know and love, just not this one. xoM

  5. margarita oh margarita you are wonderful,
    you expression and the words you choose are so beautiful
    you feelings and the questions you raise are absolutely beautiful

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