Yesterday morning marked one year since I stepped off the plane. One year since my mum greeted me at the airport and barely recognised me. One year since I drove home, looked in the mirror and didn’t recognise myself. I remember looking at myself in the mirror, taking a solid look and thinking, how did I get here? I lay in my bed, staring blankly out the same window I’d been staring out my whole life, but the view looked awfully different to the view I’d once known.
This morning marks one year since I was diagnosed with depression and day one of my endeavour into finding happiness. Over the last year I have learnt a lot about happiness but I have approached happiness in a much different way than I ever have previously. But for the sake of reminiscing I’d like to go back to the start, the first step of happiness, identifying what actually makes you happy.
This as it turns out is not as simple as it sounds. When I was in Seattle approximately two weeks before I came home I saw a doctor who told me that to improve my health and happiness I needed to A.) Reduce my sugar and caffeine intake dramatically, B.) Not to travel around anymore and stay in one place (preferably back home) and have more stability C.) Have regular exercise D) Take more baths, massages and other such relaxing things. Ok Doc, so I have no opposition to taking a bath, sure why not but your telling me that cutting out why favourite things in the world (Mar’s Bar’s,Coke and Travelling) and telling me the answer to all my problems is to go home, find a stable office job and get on a treadmill and that will make me happy? No no, your sorely mistaken!
But as much as I hate to admit it, I went home, took some baths, somewhat cut out sugar (for like a month max) got a job I feel really passionate about, have a crazy stable life with the support of my family and friends. Sometimes you don’t know what will make you happy, sometimes it is about trialing the things you think will and having an honest look at the situation. I love travelling and seeing the world, but I don’t think I’d want to travel around aimlessly for 4 and a half months again, probably one month at a time of ‘travelling around’ tops and if I wanted to be overseas for longer than that, it would be set up in a certain area. Sometimes identifying happiness is the hardest step of all. It’s the paradox of happiness, you don’t always know what it’s going to look like.