When I feel I’m on the edge of depression, I think about philosophical topics. Lately I’ve been focusing on happiness. What is it? What does it feel like? I take medication for anxiety, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder. So, I wonder if I’m capable of having everyday happiness.
I have a request. Do you know happiness? Is it your normal state or is it fleeting? Or there any prerequisites? I want honesty. I want to know. This request started when I began trying to remember times I felt happiness.
I can recall times when I’m what I call “On”. Moments when the stars align and I’m extremely social and funny. People will say, “You should be a comedian.” But it’s not on demand. I’m either on or I’m not. I can’t force it.
Those are intense, exhausting moments of giddiness. Does happiness feel like you’re laughing inside? I can only feel it with people present. Surely it can’t be happiness if you can’t feel it alone.
I began to wonder if anyone is truly happy. They must feel unhappy some of the time. Is happiness a percentage of time averaged across people?
I average about ten percent of that giddy feeling. I coast in neutral for about forty percent of the time, thanks to medication. The rest of the time is spent between obsession, anxiety, and depression in that order.
Maybe happiness doesn’t exist. It might be this neutral place of non-negative feelings? Or do I have an emotional blindness? Do the combination of the disorders I have make it impossible for me to feel? Not is a depressed way, but in a “you just don’t have that bodily function” kind of way.
Someone told me the prerequisite for happiness is gratitude. I’m starting a gratitude journal. I’ll see how that works out.
Right now I’m going back and forth between two theories.
One is happiness is like a unicorn, a myth. No one really feels it. People talk about it, say they have it, because it’s socially unacceptable to do otherwise. The other is happiness is real and I’m just not doing it right. And I guess I lied. I have a third theory, maybe I’m emotionally blind. It’s something I should stop obsessing over, accept and be at peace with it.
That brings me back to my request. Do you know happiness?