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the secret to life

This weekend I attended a beautiful memorial brunch for my great-grandmother, Mimi. Believe it or not, she lived to be 105. This wasn't a sad memorial, every family member in the room was happy, laughing, and really enjoying our time together. This is what Mimi would have wanted. About a month before she passed I went with a loved one to see her. I had on my mind one question I wanted answered: what is the secret to life? I mean, this woman seemed to have everything accomplished and figured out. She really felt like her life was complete and she did everything she ever wanted to do. She dressed up in ballgowns and danced at glamorous parties, traveled, saved, built a home, lived happily, had beautiful children, had grandchildren, had great-grandchildren, had great-great grandchildren, and found the one great love she never stopped smiling about.. even after he passed away. So I asked her. "Mimi, what is the secret to a happy life?" Her answer, I will never forget.

According to Mimi, to live a happy life was simple. She said, "Be carefree. Stop worrying so much. Love the people that love you. And don't waste time on people and things that don't make you happy. That's all it really takes." It seemed so simple, but I knew personally, I was guilty of doing the opposite of all that at one point or another. I worry about everything. I've pushed away people who love me. I've wasted time on fake friends who I knew full well never valued me, but I was too afraid to try to find new friends so I forced myself to pretend I didn't care. I've also wasted time in places that didn't make me happy but I forced myself to pretend they did. If Mimi's antidote was true, I sure as hell was on my way to an unhappy life if I didn't change something.

But by being carefree, you don't have to get hung up on everything you haven't done right in the past, and do it right today, tomorrow and for the rest of your future. The key is not to worry. I really have decided to live a more carefree life and have stopped wasting time on people and things that don't fill me with love or happiness. It's just not worth my time anymore. I'm consistently working to get myself on the path to a happy and successful life because I know that's the first thing Mimi will ask when I see her again. I can't wait to be able to tell her, "You were right."


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