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This is What Adult Joy Looks Like

If you've been following me on my blog or on IG, you might have seen this photo before. A photographer took it in December 2019, which feels super long ago, no?

I can't remember who said the thing that made us laugh. I have three funny kids, so it could have been any of them. The photographer captured a moment that is repeated when we are together.

What I love about this photo is it captures joy.

Click here to see the photo.

Adult joy (or joy from a kid who has been "through" something) differs from innocent kid-joy.

Adult joy often comes from walking through crappy stuff we'd rather avoid and knowing that a different kind of crappy thing will for sure happen again. It comes from appreciating and embracing the good in-between the crappy.

The joy you see here is sponsored by death, financial uncertainty, resentment, and walking each other through loss. It comes from not being able to fix the pain but resigning to it. It comes from learning that the pain is something to walk through. This joy is soul-expanding, courageous, deep, and whole.

That is the joy I wish for you in 2022 ... profound, meaningful joy.

Your life is painful and heavy sometimes. And it can't be fixed by a peppy affirmation. But in between the heavy, there are moments of release. I hope you relish in those moments. Sop them up like you just found a water hole in the desert.

2020 and 2021 were unexpected and hard and sad and infuriating and exhausting. And I'm just walking about COVID and what was in the news. Those last two years presented hardships that sometimes felt unbearable for every one of us.

And yet here you are. I mean, look at you! You are up. You're reading this. Somewhere you know, those disagreeable experiences are part of the necessary mixture to feel deep joy.

So honor the crap out of the hardships. Thank them. Embrace them and let them fuel your joy.

And may you be so lucky to have a photographer capture one of your joyful moments!

Happy New Year.

I'm glad you're here!

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