How to be happy at Christmas and forever and ever…
- By Ilona Burton
- Last updated: Saturday, 25 December 2010 at 9:39 am
Tradition isn’t it. I know, I know, I’m a massive hypocrite who chastises the Catholic church and then sails along happily with the rest of the family on Christmas Eve and smiles at everyone who saw me as an innocent little cutie singing in the choir aged 6. I admit it – so shoot me. Actually don’t, because I’m kind of looking forward to tomorrow, and new year, and the rest of my life. Thanks.
I never blog after consumption of alcohol anymore, but tonight is an exception. Hence the tangent.
Lovely carols (albeit at the speed of a snail on valium), readings, prayers and gospels aside, there’s the bit of mass where I remember distinctly always trying to make the effort to listen to – or at least appear to be doing so – amidst yawns and stretches and mind-wanderings, but it never, ever lasted throughout the whole thing. Even with the most exciting of priests (meaning one of the rare species that are below the fragile old age of 60), I don’t think I ever in all my years managed to pay attention to a sermon the whole way through. I wonder if anyone has – they deserve a medal… and then some.
Tonight though, something struck me. My ears pricked and for a moment I stopped feeling terribly guilty about eating a teeny slice of (absolutely amazing) chocolate pecan tart as I listened to the wise words of the priest. I had to force myself to stop replying out loud, laughing my head off or pulling ridiculous faces. What was so funny? I hear you say. Let me tell you:
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“There is one thing, and only one thing that will make you happy. All you need to be happy is commitment.” (I sigh, agreeing for once) “Commitment to God, commitment to growing closer, through prayer, to Christ…………………………” You get the picture. Anybody can be happy as long as they are close to God.
I leant to my sister, currently on rotation in a psych ward, (couldn’t keep it to myself) and whispered, “That’s it! Tell your manic depressives that little gem of information!” God is the cure. Thank you priest, oh saviour!
All very good and well for those who believe. I’m sure knowing that God is watching over them is a great comfort, a reassurance, takes the edge off like a non-addictive special pill. Nice. Good for them.
For everyone else though – what hope is there? It’s down to us. Happiness really does come from within. Fake it till you make it doesn’t work – people see throught the cracks and you will wear yourself down – been there, done that, got the shitty scars (I’d rather have a T-shirt).
I don’t wish to be negative. I just want to point something out. I thought, after hearing all the God-talk, that no matter how much, or how litte faith you have in God or in anything else, it is useless unless you have faith in yourself. For me I know it’s impossible that I will ever love myself, but to be happy, I’d like to think that there is enough inside me that I can channel into being something like happy. But it is not and never will be an external thing. You can be loved by bloody everyone and still hate yourself. You can spread happiness everywhere you go and still be depressed.
Happy comes from YOU. Whatever race, religon, sexuality, colour… it doesn’t matter. It’s inside somewhere.
From me – a massive Happy Christmas to all my readers (even those who slag me off because they have nothing better to do with their sorry little lives). Enjoy and be thankful.
Love Ilona (catherine) -shh
xxTagged in: christmas, God, happiness, Religion
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