Friday, September 20, 2013

When happiness can come rushing in to meet the sadness

Louis CK is one of the most foul, offensive, brilliant, and insightful comedians of all time. Some of you may remember a great bit of his from a talk show a few years back about how impatient we get with technology even though it has to go to space and back. It's great to look inward at the ridiculousness connected to our need for instant gratification.

Today I saw this post on Gawker with Louis CK on Conan and it hit me hard. In a good way. The content is visceral and does have some cusses (the worst bleeped out) but it's worth hearing. For me, anyway.

As with most of his interviews, there's moments of getting off track (because great comedians will take and run with good moment) but at the heart of this funny stuff there are some great insights about just being and allowing yourself to feel the bad and the good of each day instead of shutting any moment of silence or sadness down with a quick check of our device.

I got thinking, you know, The Book of Mormon touches on a similar topic when, in 2 Nephi 2:11, it reads: "For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so ... righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad."

In order to learn what goodness or happiness is, what holiness truly is, we need to know that the opposite exists and that it sucks.

This clip below got to me especially because yesterday I learned that one of my cousins died. She was 21, beautiful, talented, and troubled. And so sweet whenever we talked. I'll miss seeing her around and checking in with each other about life. Her family is really suffering right now, understandably. I've been thinking a lot about that, about her, about my kids, and about these moments in life.

Over the last 18 hours or so, I've been allowing myself to feel when it would have been so easy for me to tune into distractions. By not ignoring the raw painful emotions, I find that I'm more truly happy when the good times inevitably come back around.

Anyway, you can pretty much skip to :53 but I've added some of the best bits below this so you can just read them if you want. Here you go:

Some selected moments:

"You need to build an ability to just be yourself and not be doing something. That's what the phones are taking away, is the ability to just sit there. That's being a person. ... And sometimes when you things clear away, you're not watching anything, you're in your car, and you start going, 'oh no, here it comes. That I'm alone.' It's starts to visit on you. Just this sadness. Life is tremendously sad, just by being in it...

That's why we text and drive. I look around, pretty much 100 percent of the people driving are texting. And they're killing, everybody's murdering each other with their cars. But people are willing to risk taking a life and ruining their own because they don't want to be alone for a second because it's so hard."

Then he talks about driving in his car listening to a Bruce Springsteen song ("Jungleland") that made him really sad:

"And I go, 'oh, I'm getting sad, gotta get the phone and write "hi" to like 50 people'...then I said, 'you know what, don't. Just be sad. Just let the sadness, stand in the way of it, and let it hit you like a truck.'

And I let it come, and I just started to feel 'oh my God,'and I pulled over and I just cried l ... I cried so much. And it was beautiful. Sadness is poetic. You're lucky to live sad moments.

And then I had happy feelings. Because when you let yourself feel sad, your body has antibodies, it has happiness that comes rushing in to meet the sadness. So I was grateful to feel sad, and then I met it with true, profound happiness."

So, try to have a great weekend but also try not to forget to be present in whatever you happen to be feeling or doing. You're alive. And I'm so happy and thankful for that.

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