January was a difficult month for me personally, as readers of this column will know.
Life moves on, though, and carries us with it. So for today, I want to step back, take a deep breath, and share some of the things that make me happy.
1) Snuggling in Bed With My Honey: This and hot showers are two of my favorite things. Feeling Mark’s warmth next to me, once the triumphs and trials of the day are over, centers me and makes me happy. Until I get too warm and need my own space. LOL… I think I must have been a cat in a previous life.
2) Dark Chocolate Gelato: The really good stuff, preferably from Divine Gelato in Midtown Sacramento. I can’t have it at night – the caffeine will keep me awake – so these days it’s a rare treat. Really, though, dark chocolate in any form. It’s my writer food.
3) Game Night With Friends: Our neighbor/friend/landlady Kathy often has us over for game night, along with a few other friends, and the evening flies by as we play, talk, and laugh (and sometimes have a great meal together beforehand). In Italian, they say “A tavola non si invecchia” – at the dinner table one doesn’t grow old.
4) Italian: Speaking of Italian, it’s our adopted second language. I don’t have any Italian heritage that I know of. We started learning it when we were planning a trip to Italy on 2005, and it has brought us some of our closest friends, as well as becoming our own “secret” language out in the world.
5) Binge Watching Robotech: When that opening music plays, my heart still leaps. My first and favorite anime series. Fun fact – it’s in three separate arcs that were originally separate series. Harmony Gold bought them and wrote and produced bridge episodes between them – both of which I managed to miss when it originally aired, which was hella confusing as all the characters suddenly changed.
6) When the Writing Flies: Those moments when I just become immersed in my story, and my fingers fly across the keyboard as if they were enchanted. It’s truly like flying, and I wish writing was always like that.
7) Being Immersed in a Good Book: Speaking of immersion, I love when I’m reading a really good book, especially when it is cold and rainy outside – you know the tree-branches-lashing-the-windows rain-pouring-down-like-the-wrath-of-God kind of rainstorm, and me inside, snuggled under a warm blanket with my book. * purrs *
8) The Triumphs of Friends: When an author friend of mine gets a great review or sells that book they’ve been working on for years. Or a local friend gets good medical news or buys a new purse or finally sells their house. Or a family member has a new child or makes a great batch of jam. 🙂
9) Painting on My Buddha Board: I have this little board that uses water and a brush to paint ephemeral “paintings” on a stone surface. It’s so fricking zen, and calms me down when I need a brief moment of respite.
10) Living My Truth: I came out as a gay man in 1992, and have never looked back. It has brought so much depth and richness to my life that I can’t imagine being any other way.
To all my friends out there, what makes you happy? Stop and take a moment to think about it, and then go do something for yourself today. Love y’all!