There are times when I feel so many things, people, thoughts, emotions control me, that I really have no control over myself. It's as if so many external factors control me, that I'm not sure who I really am or what I like to do.
I had this eye-opening experience about a month ago when David and I were in Sedona. I signed-up for an onsite yoga class where we stayed and ended up being the only person there. I didn't consider leaving, but then again I didn't plan on all of the questions. The instructor was attempting to connect and asked me about myself and my family and what makes me happy. I couldn't answer her. I struggled to tell this stranger things about me. It seemed so simple: tell her about my boys and my job and move on. Well, not really. I think I gave her the bare minimum about the boys. I didn't feel like talking. In regards to what it is that I do, I wanted to retort, "Nothing really. At least, not lately.". I'm not even sure what I told her. When she asked what makes me happy, I paused for what seemed like eternity. Part of me felt like it was ridiculous for her to ask, and the other part of me realized I didn't know. I don't know what makes me happy. Finally, I said, "My family makes me happy. My boys make me happy.". I almost cried. I most certainly couldn't look her in the eye. I felt my ears get hot and start to ring, I was flushed, and I couldn't look up. I was angry at her for asking. It is a yoga class!
I came to two very big realizations: 1.) I don't like to talk about myself, and 2.) I don't know what makes me happy.
1.) My inability to talk about myself has nothing to do with humility. It has a lot to do with my anxiety, my desire to not talk too much, my low self-esteem, my fear of being judged. I don't want to be the focus of anything. That's overwhelming. I don't understand why anyone would need to know so much about me.
2.) So, I can say "who" makes me happy. I can name a few things such as family gatherings, Thanksgiving, watching my boys sleep that make me feel happy - in the moment. What it is that truly makes me happy and how to maintain an overall feeling of happiness is what I don't know.
I want to feel happy about who I am. I want more control over that happiness. I know I can make myself happy, and I am working on figuring out how.