Where is Your Happy Place?

Last Friday night, I went to Derrick Brown’s Living Room Show at a cute swanky loft in Santa Ana.  Derrick, a poet with the ability to turn your insides to mushy grits simply with words, gave the audience a chance to ask him anything we want.  Dangerous territory if you ask me.  My friend Raundi asked him, “Where is your happy place?”  Derrick went on to tell us about the time his buddy pulled him behind his boat on his surfboard, a bit like water skiing but one hundred times more difficult.  Apparently, he had to precariously back onto his surfboard from the stern while avoiding the engines and then push off.  Once up on his board, he held on for dear life while combating the wakes, the line, and the unknown below (laughing all the while).  

I loved Derrick’s happy place, simple, real, and passionate.  I get it!

Of course, it got me thinking.  Where is my happy place?  I am glad to say that I have several.  Currently, it is in my backyard jumping on my trampoline.  Several mornings a week, I put on my double duty bra, hook up my iPod to my speakers, and proceed to jump, dance, boogie, twist, spin, soar, wiggle and gyrate to Sublime, Cake, Jay-Z, Justin Timberlake and any other pop star that comes up on shuffle.   I jump until sweat pours from my body and every beer, Kit Kat bar, and negative thought seeps from my pores.  Jumping on the trampoline is to me like a dose of Prozac is to the Housewives of Orange County. It is my happy pill. 

I heard a statistic recently (I love statistics), Orange County has the second highest rate of people taking anti-depressants in the country.  It makes you wonder…  Fancy houses, Mercedes and BMW’s galore, beautiful tan, fit people, abundance everywhere.  Why so many unhappy people? 

One of my most favorite authors James Hollis, Ph.D. explains,

“We are the most affluent culture in history, the most gifted with material abundance, and we are starving.  He then goes on to say, “…satisfaction and meaning only come when we identify what feeds our soul, and find also the courage and the where-withal to make it happen.”

Dr. Hollis is right on.  We are so hungry that we reach for the things we think will feed us; a house, a car, that big contract or fitting into size 2 jeans!!!”  It is the American way.  Stuff! Beauty!  Youth!  We want a quick fix from that empty feeling that plagues us all from time to time.  We reach for a bowl of cake batter ice cream, a Martini, a Louille Vuitton purse or a Porche 911 hoping to feel full but only left with wanting more.  We are tempted by stuff, distractions and sometimes we just want to escape from it all.  I know I am guilty of this at times as well.  It seems to me that many of us are looking for our “happy place” in the wrong place. 

But when I am jumping on my trampoline, I get it.  When I am playing “Monopoly” with my family, I get it.  When I am in the throes of passion, I get it.   When I hit that perfect note when singing, I get it.  When I am sitting at Starbuck’s with my best girlfriends chatting, I get it.  When I catch that perfect wave, I get it.  When you respond to my blog enthusiastically, I get it.  These are my “happy places”.  Each time I visit my happy place, I am full.  I GET IT! 

The Poetry of Derrick Brown Link:  http://www.brownpoetry.com/

8 Responses to “Where is Your Happy Place?”

  1. Ray Says:

    make more, these are fun to read

  2. Raundi Says:

    Ha! Happy places. You know I am not even sure why I asked Derrick that. I blurted it out without thinking. Maybe subconsciously I am looking for new “happy places”. It feels like there’s a disturbance in the force. Some things that used to make me really happy have lost their appeal. When Winter hits I may not be able to body board as often. Where will I get my adrenaline fix? I am beginning to realize that sometimes “happy places” disappear. Last year I wanted to do nothing but mountain bike. The mere thought of it made me happy (I guess that’s when you know its a “happy place”). One really bad fall last Autumn kind of killed it for me. Sure I’ll still mountain bike, but its not the needle to my vein that it used to be. So I guess you gotta keep looking for “happy places”. Reminds me of “Who Moved My Cheese.” Thanks for writing this Deanne. You have inspired me to fatten my arsenal of “happy places.”

  3. alexzander Says:

    my happy place is a 7-11 at 2:30am watching a beautiful woman eat her first hot dog in years.

  4. Raundi Says:

    Alexzander, coincidentally that is one of my happy places too.

  5. Deanne Says:

    And I was truly hungry. Not just reaching for somthing to fill my empty space. I felt full being with my friends.

  6. Cindi Says:

    I loved that Deanne! That was great. It made me laugh when you said Sublime and Cake. Two of my very favorite bands, especially when I want to drive down PCH with the windows down and sing (badly) at the top of my lungs. I would have to say that my happy place is the ocean, in it, on it, or near it. Also those times of deep conversation about life that sneak up on me with those that I love…kids, husband, friends. So many places in my life where I feel like I get it, too many to list really, thanks in no small part to this lifestyle of *yes* that we lead!

  7. Lizbeth Kuhnen Says:

    Very good stuff.

  8. Mom Says:

    I don’t have the words to tell you how wonderful I think you are

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