When I feel empty. I give.

This past year, I’ve have had to send off several friends to various parts of the country/world, as they pursue careers/education hoping to find answers to the age old questions “why” and “what”. Leaving me more time and space to navigate my own questions. Some days are easy – thankful to look out the window as happy people and their families, pets, loved ones walk by, gracious and happy to have a window to look out of at all. Some days are less romantic, bumbling about in a city filled with people, opportunity, and life, feeling like I have somehow silently fallen out of place in this vibrant setting.

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And on those bad days, it takes some moments of silence to realize what’s happened. It’s not sadness, pain, or anger.. it’s literally nothing at all, which can be even more infuriating than any number of emotions.

Rewinding a couple of months back, to set the scene.. it’s late August in Brooklyn, NY. Summer won’t quit but the inevitable change of seasons is eminent. I have to find a fitting goodbye present for one of my friends moving on to follow her educational dreams. I’m feeling equal emotions of happiness for my best friend as well as sadness as I reflect on my current mindset. In a bookstore, I find a book called Ishi: Simple tips from a solid friend. (fyi: Ishi means rock in Japanese, rock .. solid, ha-ha). Amongst many excellent tips, one sticks out to me.

“When I feel empty … I give.”

And so, there’s no resounding conclusion to this rambling. Just that on a bad day.. I came across some good advice from a children’s book – and I try to hold onto that on bad days. On bad days I try my best not to hide away, and instead pick up the phone and answer someone who needs something. Though at that particular moment I don’t feel 100% full and vibrant, I do know that I can make another person smile, laugh, or at the very least feel like someone is listening, that they are not alone – and I can find peace in that.

So as I continue this path of finding well-rounded happiness and fulfillment, there are the grinding details of day to day life. But there’s simple satisfaction in finding new ways to keep your head up and eyes open.

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