Chasing that innocent bliss

As I have previously written, I’ve made alot of changes in my life over the last few years – the catalyst being the sudden death of my father in 2008. The more I have learnt, the more changes I have made – to my physical life, mental state and spiritual energy. Improvement after improvement has seen me grow more and more and become who I am today. I am proud of myself and my achievements, but there is just something still going on that hasn’t allowed for me to completely let go and to be 100% happy, I don’t get that “bliss” feeling nearly as much as I think I should be. I know its very hard to be 100% happy (and note when I just wrote that 100% I accidentally wrote $100!! hmmm…thats definitely a sign, and another story! ha!) – there is always something we want to change/do/become in order to find our bliss ¬†– but personally, I just don’t think its real. I don’t think happiness is a place, certainly not a place to stay. This is the trap I have found myself in, always striving to make changes so I can be happy. What I am finally wrapping my head around though, is that happiness is not a destination – it’s just a fleeting feeling in that moment, much like all the others.
Don’t get me wrong, I am far from depressed. I’m comfortable in my own skin. I have so much to be grateful for, and I am. I may not show my gratefulness all the time, but I truly am blessed and I know it. The problem is that when I reflect on my past, I was “happy” then too…just a different kind of happy. I had an ignorant happiness. I felt more carefree, relaxed and had more stereotypical fun, didn’t take life too seriously. I wasn’t as wild as some of my peers, but I was my own version of wild. Its true, perhaps it comes with “growing up” that the fun changes, or that as you grow as a person, you grow out of your old self…. but I must admit, at times I do miss her, I miss the ignorant life a little. It’s a little selfish, I know. Although I don’t quite think thats the right way to put it….
Since making alot of the positive changes I have increased my knowledge and understanding of more world issues, as well as made alot of personal development – but with all that, I have found there are some negitives to knowing the things I do. The more I learn, the more I know about certain subjects – parenthood, diet, climate change, animal welfare, spirituality….the more I learn, the harder it is to go back to that time when I knew much less, but was that kind of happy, an ignorant happy. The stuff I have now seen, I cannot un-see. Yes, its made me stronger. No I would never want to not be the person I am today, but man…..does it make life more challenging at times!
The old saying “Ignorance is bliss” has literally been dancing around in my head for a few months….it pops in and out of my consciousness as if it were wanting me to address it. So here I am! Now, I don’t particularly like the saying, but its extremely relevant in my life right now. The saying can be used as a way of people to remain being kept in the dark about certain things, and that not knowing something is a better place to be. An excuse of sorts. I agree, it probably is in some instances. The love of your life is cheating on you, and you don’t know (or don’t want to know); The red meat consumed multiple times a day by some people is causing their body more harm than good, but a high protein diet is ‘good for you’ so its not given a further thought. Ignorance IS a kind of bliss, but it still means you don’t know and don’t choose to know – which is something I find really hard to grasp. Why doesn’t anyone WANT to know? Being ignorant means to have a lack of knowledge or awareness; to be uneducated or unlearned – why do so many choose to lead their lives this way? I am finding it harder and harder to sympathise with people who decide to live their lives in complete darkness. Punch in and out of work they hate, waste their money on detrimental substances and services and then pass this same un-educated blind lifestyle onto their own children. I know I shouldn’t dwell on how others live their lives, it is their journey, that is their truth – but I just wish we could all evolve a little quicker, they are lagging behind!
I am a self-confessed “know it all” or “knower”…. I know a little about alot. I always want to know more. I am always wanting to stretch my knowledge in many different aspects, always asking questions or researching something until I know enough that I have made my mind up about it and can then move on. With that, comes an ever growing conscious – one that is tested much more than it once was. Now that I know more, I feel a bigger sense of responsibility, like I am carrying the worlds problems on my shoulders at times. Burdened by the reality of our existence, heavy right? I feel immense guilt if I dwell too long in the supermarket, staring at the wall after wall of processed health-ruining food-like substances, the government do nothing, the advertises do nothing, the doctors do nothing – they all keep the population from taking their blinkers off from seeing the world the way it truly is. When I see people with trollies full of meat, dairy, soft drink and junk food, I cannot help but feel for them, their families and sink deeper into a headspace of utter grief and despair. I want to do so much, I feel a huge sense of responsibility as a human on this planet. The earth is our home. I feel a huge sense of duty to speak for the ones who cannot speak, to speak my truth as I know it. I have made a lot of changes, some of which I don’t like, for the greater good. For the big picture. YES, sometimes I do want to eat a piece of salmon, or smoke a cigarette – but I won’t because then all this work I have done will be jeopardised, and nothing is more important to me than my journey, and the positive impact it has on our beautiful planet. I want my children to be proud of me, and this place, and to not feel the way I do, or even see what I have. The thing I don’t understand, is why doesn’t everyone feel this way? Will a time come when everyone stops and sees that nothing is more important? not their greed, tastes, desires or lifestyle?
Speaking of children, again, since I have learnt much more about parenting, parenthood and raising children – I am constantly tested and reminded just of this old “happy” me who used to work in a childcare centre, warming bottles of formula for the babies and toddlers in my care, putting them to sleep in their cots or beds and playing with them on the playground. Back then, I had absolutely NO knowledge about the types of parenting, about children’s diets or anything much at all! I had no idea what kind of parent I would be either. It did not phase me to raise my voice at these little innocent beings, feed them their un-nutritious foods or to punish them when they were being “naughty”. Now, I am embarrassed for myself. THAT kind of ignorance may have been bliss for me, I enjoyed my workdays and got so much out of working with children…..but what gets me now is the consequences of my ignorance. Have any of the children in my care been negatively affected by my interactions with them in their early development? Could I have done more to be a positive parent-like role model for these beautiful little people? If I had known what I do now, could I have changed their lives for the better? all of these answers I will never know.
Ignorance is bliss…. for the ignorant. ¬†thats what the saying should be changed to. The lack of knowledge keeps the knowledge keeper in a “happy” place, but what are the consequences of this selfish act? If you choose to be ignorant, you are selfish. You are saying to the universe that its ok to live a lie, to ignore your intuition, that anyone can take advantage of you and your precious gift of life and that its ok to live at the lower spectrum of evolution. You are teaching your children that its ok for someone else to tell you how to live your life, to settle for less. The ripple effect can be catastrophic. So many others are effected by our selfish actions, sometimes we just don’t see it until we have to finally face the consequences. Knowledge is power, knowledge is the key to us ever evolving.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that this big, daunting word “HAPPY” needs to be taken less seriously. Let it come, let it go. I have found that new things make me happy now, and they are a far cry from past happy feelings….like going to the health food store and finding a new vegan dessert, designing a really cool logo, watching an awesome doco on juice fasting or watching my son giggle at his daddy reads him his favourite book. They are my new “bliss” feelings. They all take me to my happy place.
In reflection, perhaps its truly the INNOCENCE I miss, not the IGNORANCE. I miss that blissfully unaware feeling I had when I would down 10 rum and cokes and chain smoke all night long, but that was me being ignorant and their are consequences to those actions. The school dances where we could dress in theme and dance the night away with our friends….that is the stuff I miss, the innocence. I have to accept that those days are past, but new ones are coming and will always continue to. My son’s own innocence is already helping to teach me to stop taking on so much of the world’s issues, and to live in the moment, with him, my world. By acknowledging the feeling that innocent bliss gives me, I am showing others what the true happiness is; and perhaps that is all I can be doing now to help inspire others to ditch their ignorant blisses and to find it in the more uncorrupted, pure form of the word. To laugh at the little things, to let go and feel those innocent feelings again, with, and through my son. Then perhaps those other uneducated choices might begin to seem less important. Here’s hoping :)
Right, thats enough rambling for today. I’m off to jump through the sprinkler or something.
Love, light and bliss
Sarah xox

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