The capacity of the human heart.

10 Sep

The capacity of the human heart never ceases to amaze me….or more precisely, the ability of human emotions to keep us afloat. This time yesterday, my heart was full of sadness for a pet that passed away. However, right now, in this exact moment, I am incredibly happy.

Nothing particularly amazing happened today that lead to this happiness, which is why it feels a bit strange right now. I went to class, spent some time with friends (which included having my first pumpkin spice latte of the fall season, despite it not feeling like fall), and did some errands and schoolwork. See, just an average, run-of-the-mill Monday. Even though I have had moments in my life where a really shitty day is followed by a really amazing day, it doesn’t happen often.

The more I think about how I’ve felt today, the more I am reminded of a particular Elizabeth Gilbert quote about happiness:

Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it. You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestations of your own blessings. And once you have achieved a state of happiness, you must never become lax about maintaining it. You must make a mighty effort to keep swimming upward into that happiness forever, to stay afloat on top of it.

Even though I feel that this quote definitely rings true for today, I also know that part of my happiness is stemming from the little things: being grateful that I got so much schoolwork done yesterday, realizing how lucky I am to have so much love and support from my friends, and the fact that every single day, I get to do what I love. Yes, I’m still in college. My immediate concern is my education, which is how it should be (thankfully, I love school, so it’s a fun adventure rather than a daily drag). However, at the center of my world and the center focus of my heart is my writing. I get to write every single day, and I love that I have that ability. Yes, it is a very simple act. However, it makes me feel completely and utterly alive. Even though that may sound a bit cliché, it’s the truth, and it’s the only way I’m able to express the amazing role that writing plays in my life.

It is because of writing that I am able to share my story with the world. Though that may not seem like a big deal to you, it means everything to me. In short, I grew up with a disability. I grew up going to physical therapy, having intense surgeries, and asking myself on a daily basis why I had to be different from every other kid my age. Even though I have come no closer to answering that question since I have begun writing my memoir, I do know this much. I know that I feel happier after I share a memory or a struggle with all of you. Knowing that there are people out there who are reading my words and who are encouraging me to keep on sharing my story is one of the main reasons why I keep on trudging through my incredibly painful past. However, the other main reason is because it makes my heart happy. Even though that may seem like a funny thought, it’s true.

Therefore, even though yesterday was incredibly hard in an emotional sense, I am grateful to the capacity of my heart to realize who and what make this life worth living.

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3 Responses to “The capacity of the human heart.”

  1. Josie Gabriel September 11, 2012 at 3:44 am #

    I thought your post about Roxy was lovely, the perfect simple memorial – and I’m glad you have found unexpected happiness in the everyday. It’s very autumnal here in Cornwall, sunny, but with a cold chill in the mornings, which is giving me a boost of energy. This morning I looked out of the window and felt really excited for no reason that I can think of.
    Elizabeth Gilbert was born in the same month and year as me, and her book Eat, Pray, Love was so acutely similar to my own struggles in life when I read it (apart from being able to go to Italy, India and Bali Lol), that I’ve always felt a connection to her writing.
    Thanks for sharing. x

  2. Cerebral Palsy Family Network September 15, 2012 at 8:47 pm #

    It’s great that you find comfort in sharing your experiences. If you are interested in blogging to a larger audience, contact the people at Cerebral Palsy Family Network. It’s also a great place if you just want to get involved in the cerebral palsy or disabled community. Check it out!

    • ameliaclaire92 September 16, 2012 at 3:43 pm #

      Thank you so much for telling me about this. 🙂

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