We must crack open to see our joy. For humans, it is not enough to feel it. We bend until we break ourselves, so that we may then believe what we are, what we forgot. Gratitude is the most direct path to joy. It expands the interactions of the day.
We feel it in the gasp of welcome surprise, in the pause before that first sip of hot tea. In the hush, the hand clap, the bouncing on heels as we squeal, the silence that pulses through hands tending to the day’s work or washing things clean. In the throbbing ache of face and sharp nag of neck, as pain shakes the body limp.
A litany of thanks comes dribbling from shaking lips, as a tear-stained face chases grace. Muttering the many names of faces, loved ones and a hundred small things that announce a love for life, in ragged breaths. This silent presence in our lives, opens wide each second; an atom spilling its secrets to us. It soothes brow, slows breath and beckons sleep when rest is all that will heal.
That is why we begin with joy. Glance inward, sense it there as the day breaks; beneath all the rest that we are made of that is wrapped in layers around it. So that when we break; when life cracks us open, our greatest expression can be the thing that remakes us. This gift is far more precious than promises of the future. They are but sea glass winking from a distance, in the sun.
Joy holds us up and moulds our mettle into whatever is needed. Just as we feel we may crumple like paper, in that wavering moment as devastation slams through us. Joy is always there. And all it asks, all it ever asks of us, is to remember six words – so that we may feel its force shingling through our limbs and expanding our heart…
Thank you, thank you, thank you.