Guilty in happiness

‘Mbuzi ikakondwa amalonda ali pafupi‘.

I have always been cautious about being overly happy. I would like to think much of it has to do with my primal human instinct of survival. Happiness almost seems like a fragile state to be in. Mostly because one is always oblivious of everything that would go wrong when happy. Somehow our human instinct is to always be ready, even for things we cannot control. And so on my happiest day I catch myself mid laughter, questioning; what am I going to pay for this much happiness?

The view of life we keep being sold is one where a happy moment is almost always followed by a traumatic one. It has been portrayed over and over again in pop culture and society in general. The kid always get abducted on that wonderful Disney adventure;  the wife gets shot just after a beautiful wedding. And the poor guy from ‘Taken’ has to make that call, ‘I will find you, and I will kill you’, poor guy. That is what we have accepted as the norm.

Happiness as a topic is fascinating. But perhaps the most fascinating thing to me about happiness is the idea that it has to be earned. It is intriguing how much we police ourselves out of happiness. How much we question our happiness. Damn it, we even need a reason to spoil ourselves. It is as if we ask ourselves, what have you done to deserve this? Somehow we have to earn our own happiness. And because we are so hardworking we go further to police others, asking to know why they seem happy. One has to wonder, if we can’t even depend on ourselves for our own happiness, what are the chances someone else will supply it to us consistently?

I found myself questioning my own happiness lately, and almost succeeded in guilting myself out of it. Reminding myself of all the things I am yet to do, and all the things that have not gone according to plan. Accepting happiness as a state separate from my plans and ambitions is something that will take time learning. Unyoking happiness from the worst part of ourselves is a necessary task. Happiness has to be sacred, surviving in spite of all our broken plans of what we imagine the perfect life to be.

I hope you don’t ever have to need a reason to be happy!

mbuzi ikakonda amalonda ali pafupi’, I guess you will have to sell me this time around.





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