When we were in Kosovo we hung out for a day with a girl from Romainia. She was living and working in Kosovo, I asked her if it was hard,
"For me life is not hard or easy. It just is. If it goes well I am happy," was her response. You can almost hear the Eastern European accent, can't you? At first I was surprised at her answer, and thought I should be saddened by it. Then I really wasn't. I thought, 'how freeing.' Life just is and if it goes well I am happy. What a relief to not have to fight life all the time and strive for happiness. To just take it as it comes and if bad things happens, well that's life.
Some may think that it's grim acceptance, but what if it's just acceptance.
I remember hearing once that Buddhists believe that suffering is our only guarantee in life. I think so many of us believe that happiness is a right, well, actually our constitution tells us it is. Is it though? What gives us the right to insist that we be happy all the time? I think that may be the source of so much sadness. We believe that we should be happy so when things don't go our way we are doubly sad. I have discovered that often things don't go my way. Sometimes I can make sense of it, like that boy I had a huge crush on that I was destined to marry? Turned out to be a jerk and my husband that I have now is perfect for me. Other things? Like a miscarriage. Will never make sense.
I haven't been asked my too many New Englanders if I like it here yet. But I have thought about it, do I like it here? I think had I moved here from Southern California I don't think I would like it. It's humid, there's a winter to be dealt with, the beaches aren't [sigh] the same. Fortunately though I moved around a lot in the past few years and realized that there is life outside of Southern California. The more I move the more I realize that nowhere is perfect. In Southern California the weather is boring and there are too many people. In Chicago the winter is harsh and there is nothing fun and outdoorsy (not super fun to go hiking in corn fields). In Colorado the winter is long, and well, the winter is long. Which if you love to ski that is awesome, but if you love to hike, as I do, that's not so awesome.
So do I like it here? I don't know that I have the luxury of liking it or not. We are here. Indefinitely. So I might as well dig in and enjoy what I can find to enjoy. There are beaches, trails, lakes, and ponds. There is convenient shopping and coffee shops. Having the ocean so close I would have taken for granted had I moved directly from Southern California. Having convenient shopping I would have taken for granted had I not lived in Buena Vista. Having fun outdoorsy things I would have taken for granted had I never lived in Chicago. Funny how life prepares you to end up where you are.