Monday, August 25, 2014

Finding Happiness...

I've recently returned from a hectic trip to Italy to explore and embrace the history and culture.  This is a major trip for my son who has been dreaming of Italy since he became obsessed with Rome and Greek history.  For me it was more about the food and sights, but you know... to each his own.  We combined both.  The food was amazing and since returning (we're still suffering from jet lag), I've found myself totally uninspired by my cooking.  I literally stood (half asleep) in the grocery store aisles and found myself unable to grocery shop.  I didn't feel inspired anymore.  I need to do more of that.  However, this post isn't about my culinary tastes, it's simply about the book I picked up while standing in the book store at the airport looking for some light reading on my trip.  I wanted something light, literally since dragged luggage around during our 3 city tour was not my idea of fun. 
When I spotted this book, The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, I remembered a review I'd read a while ago praising it's virtues and since it was part of my plan to begin focusing on myself for the next little while I picked it up.  Couldn't hurt I decided. 
At any rate, I finished it before I returned - lots of wait time in airports and train terminals helped with that.  I was mid-way through when my son and I landed in Florence mid-trip.  A discussion broke out and remembering something I read in the book I decided not to interrupt and simply keeps my thoughts and opinions to myself and let my son get some things off his chest.  This was very difficult as he informed me of things that are hard for a mother to hear.  Apparently, I'm not winning any mother of the year award even with this trip to Italy (paid for entirely by me I might add).  But I listened and while I fumed about his short sightedness and felt unappreciated, I had to admit rather begrudgingly that he had a point.  I've been so focused these last few years on some rather major issues (such as the sudden death of mother, my father's battle with ALS and being the prime caregiver in my home, career stress and other health problems for both him and myself, and the dog for that matter that I really hadn't been thinking about how this was affecting him.   Actually that's not entirely true - the trip to Italy was my attempt at trying to repair the damage and make it up to  him - but I had been so distracted for the last few years... it wasn't easy to hear let's just say that.
At any rate, after this discussion, I decided to start my own Happiness Project and see where it takes me.  While this book is a few years old now (I'm so behind the times) I do recommend it.  Having read the book I'm just beginning my research phase so I'm really not there yet, but I'm starting with this post.  It seems like more of a pledge to myself this way I guess.  I don't have the budget she has or the time to do as much in-depth research, but we'll see where this leads me.
Oh yeah, more on Italy after I sort through the thousands of pictures that I took - I need to remove some things from my computer in order to download them from my camera.  Yeah, I went a bit crazy with the new camera.

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