One of the last things my father ever said to me was, “Live life to the fullest and just be happy.” Happy, an elusive word that seemed so simple, but to me so unattainable. I suffered silently as my father did, and as he slowly deteriorated from the cancer that overcame him, happiness seemed to be a twinkle in the distance of infinite heartbreak.
When he passed away, I set off on a journey to find happiness. To be truly happy meant that I had to replace the parts of me I lost over the years. For far too long I held myself back from my full potential. I convinced myself to stay where I was because it was comfortable and convenient – at a great paying corporate job that made my soul ache, and in a relationship that was great at surface level but lacked any emotional depth. I felt like I didn’t deserve more. Who was I to dream bolder dreams?
We only have one life, one chance, and here I was, settling for a life that I was struggling to find the motivation to get out of bed most mornings to face. I made a list of what made me happy, truly happy, and when I compared that list to my life at the time, not one thing was on it. So, I walked away from everything I knew and all that I hid behind to pursue the happiness I rightfully deserved.
I never looked back; well actually I did, but only to see how far I’d come. The irony of finding happiness is that it’s a long and arduous road to get there. A road filled with speed bumps at every turn, detours, and unexpected delays. It was the most heartbreaking, exhilarating, and liberating thing I’ve ever done.
When I finally found it, happiness embraced me and filled my soul, and the journey that it took to get there was all worth it.
I’ve always been my own worst enemy. My father was my hero, he saved me from myself time and time again by instilling positivity, hope, and courage within me. It was in his last moments, with those last few words, that he would come to my rescue for the last time, and it changed my life forever.