Finding JOY

I had a really rough day yesterday.

The kind of day that, when faced with blogging at the end of it, I couldn’t do it.

I couldn’t write, I couldn’t think…so I wrote fluff.

Like, real, stupid fluff. Very rarely does the quality of my writing stoop to that level.

Last night when finally got into bed, I felt my fingers grasp the small silver circle I wear on a chain around my neck.

It’s simple. It contains the stamp of a small flower and three letters.


I wear it in memory of my friend. I wear it to remind myself of the JOY I have because I have a Father Who loves me and values me. I wear it to help myself remember to choose that JOY each and every moment.

And I have to be honest with you that last night I wanted to do anything but choose it.

In fact, I would have been happier to throw it all out the window.

It wasn’t a good day. It started off fine, but by afternoon, it wasn’t so good.

I couldn’t string a sentence together to s

ave my life. There’s no post for the Patch this week.

I couldn’t stop the tears from falling. I felt worthless.

Tobin and I had a pretty good argument which ended, as usual, with me in tears. I got to leave for grocery shopping with eyes so puffy and red that I felt everyone staring at me.

It ended up being a late night, and by the time I literally crawled under the covers, all I wanted to do was forget about everything, including the JOY I’m supposed to have.

That JOY…that choice.

The one that says, I’m going to make the best of this and be happy with life no matter what I’m given.

And that’s when I thought about her…that girl. Gitz, who was so joyf

ul. I didn’t visit her condo, the one she stayed in 24/7 for years. I didn’t ever meet her in person, only in the words of life that she spoke through her blog. I didn’t read her complaints… I read her joyful words.

In one of her posts, she wrote the following, and I thought through those words last night.

A reader asked her, “How do you manage to stay so positive

? So happy? Don’t you ever just get really mad?”

Here’ s her an


I suppose the cop out answer, while true, is that I just don’t have the energy to be mad. Seriously. It takes so much effort and energy to wallow. And it’s not any fun.

I live 99.8% of my time alone, and if anger was all I had to
live with I would lose my mind.

I think, for me, it has been about learning to want what He wants for me more than what I want for myself. It’s a tall order and I don’t say that flippantly. But my joy has truly come from Him finding His joy in me rather than me finding my joy in what I desire.

It doesn’t mean I don’t long for different, it just means I find peace in fulfilling rather than understanding.

In the knowledge that this life isn’t about me, it’s about Him.

The thing I try to remind myself of, as I am without all the things that I wish I had to make me happy, is that my biggest need is Him. More than I need to be outside in the fresh air, more than I need to move without pain, more than I even need Dad… I need His will to be done in my life whether it is comfortable or not. There is not one thing that feels comfortable about my world right now, but I need Him more than I need to change my circumstances.

It’s still brutally hard. I have to remind myself of these facts every day. It doesn’ t always come easily.

But it doesn’t make the truth any less true.

And the truth is that I can choose the joy.

So I do.

This morning I woke up and went for my run. Two miles in the somewhat-freezing cold, and I smiled the whole time.

I came home, got my girl ready for the day, and we headed to church to help with something. After, we went out with two friends who always make me smile…and it was good.

My heart was happy, and the truth is, I know that every day won’t be like this…but there is still so much JOY in my life around me, even on those days when I can’t see it.

But if Sara could find it, I know I can.

I miss her. But I also know that, at this very moment, she is more JOYful than she’ s ever been.

And that’ s pretty cool.



  1. A wonderful reminder that joy is always a choice. Often not an easy one, but always a choice. Thanks for your thoughts

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