Sunday, July 29, 2012

So Cherish Your Gumballs

"If you can't find joy in the little things along the way, whats the point of getting to the end? If the end goal is made up of joy in lots of little things, what's the point of getting there?"

I'd wager that most of us have heard the advice to "find joy in the little things". Meaning instead of waiting for the big Mile-Markers of Happiness to reach you, take pleasure in what you have from moment to moment. Ah, what wisdom. And it's almost too sagely when you're in the middle of lots of plain-old-crummy-things that sometimes pop up in life, and what you'd rather do is simply eliminate the "little things". Far more satisfying than struggling to smile when trips on the sidewalk, stains on clothes, traffic tickets, indigestion, and unhappy conversations are on the loose. But the woman who spoke the above words knew her stuff--because it's entirely true (of course).

This is how it finally made sense in this blogger's mind: gumballs. Picture this scenario--you are working and waiting your whole life for this huge jar of colorful gumballs. That's the goal, and you will have everlasting (gobstopper?) happiness if you live a good life and earn your eternity's worth of gumballs. Pink, green, tangerine, yellow, blue, grey, violet, cherry red, speckled white, turquoise, lime... so bright and colorful and happy! And all you were given at the start of your life is a giant, empty glass jar. Each time you laugh, each time you snicker at a birthday card, any time you smile, any peace you suddenly feel, every moment of joyful relief, whenever you find something beautiful or uplifting, you get a gumball. Regardless of why you ended up smiling or feeling good, a little pink or yellow or aqua or purple gets added to your once-empty jar. And at the end of your life, you excitedly remember that it's time! Your life's aim and effort is about to materialize in perfect bliss! But then you look at your brimming jar and realize... you already have your jar of gumballs. That huge happiness is right there, waiting for you... and it's not a new bunch of gumballs. You are familiar with every single one, and how it got into that jar. Because your happiness at the end is literally made of the happiness you enjoyed along the way. . . . .

The idea that underscores it all is up at the top. Take pleasure in what you have from moment to moment. Don't berate yourself, don't get down if you forget. Remember that there is always, always, always something you are grateful for; that Gumballs are made of Gratitude; and that you can add to your jar no matter what the circumstances in life.

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