When I close my eyes and think these three words: happy, joyous and free, it almost always conjures Julie Andrews atop a hill, running and singing – that’s what those three words mean to me. Or a toddler laughing and playing peek and boo. No judgements, no worries, no fears. How often has anything close to that happened in my life?

Today and for the rest of this month, I’m going to learn to like myself, or die trying. I’m going to concentrate on the positive things – not in my life, but in me. I need to learn, accept and know that me, alone, is enough.

It’s the mad, sad, glad or scared emotions that I’m working with most often – they’re the ones with the most punch and staying power: one good fearful fist to the face can leave my nose out of joint for days. These base emotions (three out of four being seen as negative, btw) allow for the most drama and despair; if I’m to give up directing and just be an actor, then by God I’ll be the most difficult thespian the world has even known!

But that’s all alcoholic thinking. My disease doesn’t see hues; it’s all about creating stark contrasts. Bold, vibrant, committed. To what I have no idea. All it needs to understand is that I’m not happy, joyous or free, and therefore, failing.

However, when considered, do I really want to be racing to the tops of hills with a song in my heart on a daily basis? When would I go to work? Truth be told, I’m going to spend most days at the base, among the regular folk, all whom seem happy, joyous and free, and yet I don’t see them running up the hill. Hmm.

So, the question: How am I defining these words? Because if becoming them seems completely unattainable, maybe I’m setting them up too high.

Today: Recognize the happy, joyous and free in myself and the everyday – that’s where I need to start looking.

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