Defining Contentment

Photo credit by Shannon Bailey.  I think the girls had given up on kite flying at this point, except for me in the background with one waaaaaay up in the air and my mom watching from a lawn chair.  Of course, when the girls tired of the kites, that’s when they tied one to Grendel, who flew  his kite for quite a while, racing into the wind with the kite high behind him! (see other pic)

Lots of people talk about finding contentment. It’s the holy grail of my generation and something I’ve never really considered as completely possible for me.  I always have more to push toward, it seems, so I’m never really 100% content.  I’m always looking inward for more or outward for more and never stagnating, and I think I have partially defined contentment as stagnation.

This weekend, I had some moments of utter contentment.  No question about it. There was no need to search for it.  Shannon, who was by my side on a particular walk back to the creek with Grendel running and leaping through the pasture grasses, was the one who named the wonderful feeling.  

It was the second day of our trip to the farm.  There’s no cell service and this time, no Internet service.  An unplugged sort of weekend.  The weather was sunny and mid-to-high 70’s, and breezy.   Spring was bursting out everywhere around us, from the lush green grasses to the blossoms of dogwoods and azaleas,  to the pales shades in the forests and fields we passed  as on the way over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house we went.  As we walked back to the creek where the mayhaws are just starting to bloom, we agreed that we were absolutely, totally content.

It was an epiphany where we could actually define contentment for ourselves.  We were “in the moment,” with no worries about the past or the future, and no place in the world that we’d rather be than there, at that precise moment.

I think that sums it up nicely.

Thanks for reading!  This article in included in its entirety in The Long-Awaited, Honest-to-God Secret to Being Happy.

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