search instagram arrow-down

Get Social

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. I won’t spam you, just posts from the blog.

Join 3,525 other followers


I’m stealing this line from Laura McKowen’s Instagram post. Flat out thievery. It happens — the joy, not the thievery — from time to time. Just the act of being, a sudden awareness of how good this is — this life that I’ve found on the other side of fear — the fullness of my life without booze can be surprising.

These moments of recognition come at ordinary times – walking down the street, after the rain has started or stopped, midway through an ice cream cone. These little moments of sheer joy are a fleeting treat and when I catch myself in one I nearly always smile.

For years, I strived to find happiness and failed. I looked everywhere I was told to look. Happiness will come, they said – in your job, or your wife, or your family, the new car, nice clothes, the latest gadget, and on and on and on. Always external. Always in some thing or some other. Never within.

And when I had all the things that were supposed to bring me happiness, I found myself profoundly unhappy. And I self-medicated, which only led to the darkest corner of hell I could find.

I’ve learned that when I’m unhappy, it’s usually because I’m not happy with myself. It’s usually because I’ve done something or failed to do something. Sometimes that sense of being ill at ease comes because I’ve judged myself so harshly, or have compared myself to some unrealistic ideal. Very rarely am I really unhappy with someone else – though there are times, because let’s face it, sometimes you just run into a world class asshole in life.

I’ve found that when I am happy with myself, when I accept myself for who I am, warts and all, that these moments of unexpected joy surface. Joy, by accident.

4 comments on “Joy, by Accident

  1. So simple, yet so profound and true. The external is always a disappointment and often a construct marketed to us. All the best Damien.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I love joy!! (lol I know I have told you this before!!)
    And you are a million times right! I find joy inside and in nature and with other people!!
    New purses are nice, but do not bring me everlasting joy!!


  3. This was wonderful to read, and so true. Wishing you many more simple, joyful moments 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful. That joy reminds me so much of being a kid again. I’m finding it too now and then, and you’re right. They are such gifts. 💕

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: