There is only one reason anyone – including you – do anything. One. Just ONE reason.
To be happy.
First, let me establish that you cannot be happy if you do not survive.
Second, let me establish that you cannot be happy if you are mad, though there are some people who would tell you so: I am only happy when I am mad. They are false. What they are happy about are their own feelings of being alive. Being so unhappy and so dead inside, they can only feel happy when their adrenal glands are pumping and they have some conflict to resolve.
My mom was – and is – one of those. She gets angry at a heart’s notice; a single incidence of anything she cannot control. And that leads me into another thing: a person’s desire to control things.
All people need a form of control, or at least a little one. That’s in order to survive. You have to control your environment just enough to give you shelter and food; water, entropy (old age), and a mate. After that everything’s up to you – you’ve gone beyond simply surviving to starting to thrive. And that’s the beginning of one’s search for happiness – “the pursuit of happiness” as America’s founding father’s had said.
After that things get difficult. What do you do to survive? Do you overcontrol, like my momma did – or go even further to become one of those corporate leaders corrupted and ate up by greed? Letting that “control to survive” thing get a little bit out of hand; going a little bit too far to survive – at the cost of someone else’s own happiness? I don’t know – I don’t know you at all. But I’m willing to bet that everything you do surrounds this need to ‘thrive’ (find happiness) and survive. In one way or another, everything boils down to that sort of thing.
Take my mom for instance. She used to hit and beat us – beat us bad! – when she’d go mad. Losing her mind and things. What was the use in that sort of thing, you ask?
Well, it gave her sort of a sense of control of things in her environment – that drive to survive – as well as giving her a little bit of something else. She’d been so beaten and bruised inside (as a young girl, I imagine and suppose, given the things her stepfather had done) – she felt dead inside; hopeless perhaps in things regarding her own future. But by beating her young’uns she could get this sense of control – if she couldn’t control HIM (meaning her young husband) – at least she could control these two young adults she was forming. And yet at the same time she was releasing all those endorphines and hormones that kept her ‘feeling alive’ – in some ways (quite chemical) – adding to her own sense of happiness. Despite the things she’d had done. (Not that she is regretting them any; she doesn’t regret anything she’s done, except perhaps marrying my dad, giving birth to us boys, remarrying my dad after she’d gotten done divorcing him . . . her own life, perhaps.) And she still insists she is happier when she is mad. I imagine between that and her high blood pressure (the doctors are amazed she’s alive) – she’s gonna blow a fuse one day and roll over dead . . .
I imagine she’ll be happy then – giving the Devil some of his own hell and a piece of her mind . . . yeah, that’s her.
But the thing is: it was all done in the search of some happiness. The splitting of my mind: done by some child in a way to find some happiness, some way to get along . . .
Think about it – really analyze the thing. I know my grandsons (9 and 11) did – they analyzed it in about four minutes and found it true:
Their mother had divorced their father. Why? She thought she would be happier without him. (did it work?, I asked. No, they both glumly replied.)
The littlest one had stole my knife – and a mini-stiletto, no less! – and taken it to school. Why’d he take it?, I asked (not getting mad at him. I understand this sorta thing about young children, especially smart and troubled kids like him . . . having been one some time ago). Because he wanted it, he replied. Why? I asked again. And eventually we came around to it: he thought the thing would make him happy, at least for a little while – and it did. And then . . . well, trouble ensued. Not from me – but for him – and it began at school and ended at home with a good ol’ butt-whooping. (Not that his momma abused him; but he got a good spanking. The boy needs some correction – really, he does. Nip it in the bud, I say, nip it now. And I gave him the guilt thing about stealing from his grandpa . . . just for good measure in the end. For my own happiness and his – long term.)
Again and again, if you look at this thing, keep asking “why?” again – you will find. People do things to find and/or gain their own happiness – whether it be wrong or right – any sort of thing. Sometimes their perceptions are warped by their perceptions of ‘need’; and it seems usually folks got it wrong – they are seeking their own happiness from somewhere outside when the truth is:
It can only come from within.
Change your perceptions and you can do that: find some happiness in your life. It’s gonna take a long time and you’ll go a long way in looking at and discovering things, but in the end you’ll find – from the spring of happiness comes love and life and all things beyond . . .
And you’d be surprised at how little you need just to get there . . . right around the corner in your mind.
Wishing you luck on this adventure of yours . . . hoping you find it there. Because knowing you did? That would help me, too.