I've often heard people say ... "It was the happiest day of my life."
Well, I've got a confession. I can't say that about any particular day or event.
I can rather easily tell you when I was my angriest, saddest, proudest, or most scared. Matter of fact, for just about any emotion you come up with I can tell you the date, time, and place of my most extreme emotional output -- except for happiness. And I'm not sure why.
It's not that I'm not capable of happiness. Actually I am happy 99% of the time. I tend to be a glass-half-full kind of guy who doesn't let all the small gunk of life cloud my view.
If anything I'm guilty of being to sure that something good is just a stone's throw away. I'm quite the Polly Anna in that fashion.
I know a lot of parents will say that the births of their kids count as their ultimate moments of happiness, and I do cherish both of my boys, but confession time again. Their actual births were nerve racking affairs of futility for me. I hate to worry, but that is all I did those days.
Both boys were C-sections. The second planned, the first not. Being a life long hunter who processes his own meat, the blood and what not didn't bother me, but watching a doctor dig in my wife's innards isn't exactly a zen moment either. And then trying to check on her, tend to a squalling bundle of placenta covered joy, listening to her doctor's instruction, the boys pediatrician, the nurses, ... all while family and friends chimed in ...
Well it was stressful as hell for me. I count the days and weeks later when it was just my family at home, when the boys cooed softly or opened the eyes to stare up at them as I fed them, or the first time a soft baby fist reached up to brush my stubbled cheek. Those are all much happier times than the big event everyone else seems to describe as wondrous and miraculous and the happiest day of their lives.
Yeah I know as a dutiful husband I could say my happiest time was my wedding day. But I'd be lying. I love my wife and will forever consider myself lucky to have found a gorgeous and intelligent woman blind enough to overlook my many faults, but again the stress and pressure of that day keeps it from being my definitive moment of joy. The demands of trying to talk to every family member and friend I have, while decked out in fancy but uncomfortable duds, smiling for a thousand pictures many from an extremely irritable photographer, while waiting for everyone to go home so ... well I won't go into that.
Anyway I have so many fond memories with Jennifer that I couldn't possible designate one as my most happy time.
There was my big plan to propose at the top of a mountain, but halfway up she was out of breath and gasping from lack of oxygen, as was I, so that my visions of the sun reflecting off her diamond ring atop a majestic mountain peak, actually became a yes under the shadowy pine covered side of a mountain slope.
There are the thousands of whispered conversation we've had and still continue to have each night as we lay in bed and talk about our day.
There are the trips we've taken together, to New Orleans, Vegas, the mountains, to beaches. The many songs that remind me of her for a jillion different reasons. The memory that I ate spaghetti for supper every other day for the first month we were married. Not one of those memories overrides all the others.
Maybe my most happy moment is yet to come. Maybe I'm holding out for it. Maybe I'll never be able to define it. But I'm not complaining. If this is as good as it gets then I'm still pretty damn lucky, whether I have that one spotlight moment of happiness domination or not.
So how about all of you? Can you define your happiest day?