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  • Writer's pictureJayce

Happiness is a Pen in One Hand and a Glass of Wine in the Other

I’m kind of awful at updating this thing.

Since I’ve last been on this page (last year), I’ve not only celebrated Jesus’ birthday, but I’ve celebrated my own. I went to Memphis, Tennessee with some of the most important women in my life: my mom, my aunt, my two grandmothers, and my dear friend Ashton. We went on Beale Street, participated in karaoke and a to-do list of things so generously supplied by Ashton, and had a very relaxing spa day complete with facials and massages. I don’t recommend celebrating a 21st birthday without a spa day planned to massage the hangover away. (Side note: If you’re a “Frat Chaser”, Pi Kappa Alpha participates in a convention in Memphis during the second weekend of January.. you’re welcome:)).

What I’m really here for, though, is to share this little experience that I reflected on this weekend. I don’t know how many people read this. I don’t know how many people care at all to follow my life or anything, but something sneaky happened over this Christmas Break that I want to share in case it helps someone else. I made a cliche vow to myself to be happy when the New Year rang in. Since November, I’ve been in a weird spot. I’ve been in a transition of sorts, and it’s been tough. So I took the bull by the horns when the clock struck midnight. I DECIDED to be happy.

I learned, through time I guess, that happiness, like love, isn’t a feeling. Those two ’emotions’ are decisions. I decided to be happy and to love myself. I didn’t need approval of anyone else, not a panel of judges and certainly not a boy. I once told someone that “If you aren’t obsessed with the life you live, change it”, and 2016 is the year that I start to take my own advice. So I did. I cut a lot of negativity out of my life. It was more difficult that I imagined, but I did it (and I’m still reaping the benefits of that tiny victory). I made a lot of healthy choices mentally and physically. I started thinking happy thoughts, and I’ll continue that habit through the year because I really like where I am because of it.

The other night, I went on a first date, which I hate because they make me so anxious. The guy asked me (because I guess a first date is a mini-pageant-interview?) three words I use to describe myself. I thought for a minute. I couldn’t use the same answer I had so thoughtfully prepared for October’s pageant because I simply am not the same person I was then. I’ve grown and changed a lot in that short time, and I didn’t really see that until that moment. Who I am now, is not the same girl who had blinders on in search of that crown. So after thinking about it.. A LOT… like, literally telling the guy that I needed a while to think…. I used these three, true words: “Competitive, Free-Spirited (it’s hyphenated, and it TOTALLY counts), and Happy”.

That last one took me by surprise when it came out of my own mouth, but it’s so true now. So much has shifted, and I let my attitude change. I made my attitude change, and it showed right that second. I am happy, thought I was disappointed, for the events of October. I am proud of the people in my life, because they have earned their place. I am confident in who I am as a woman and who I am becoming. For the first time in so long, I feel powerful, and it’s because I said “happy” when I could have said any other word. I am finally content with where I am in my life’s journey. I am capable of cheering on others because I have learned to be HAPPY and PROUD of who I am and what I’ve done thus far.

I really think that can only take me farther.

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