Many people have messaged me throughout this experience and have told me that they think I am brave, that I seem happy, and that they are happy for me. A lot of thought has gone into this, and I want to say that for the most part, my walk in life at this moment isn’t filled with constant happiness. With that being said, it’s not filled disappointment or despair, or anything among the opposite.
In a way, you could say that I don’t necessarily believe in happiness; in a way, that is. And the way that I don’t believe in it, is where I walk around all the time thinking to myself, “How happy I am.” That would seem illusory to me. Although there are moments when I feel happy, and there are moments when I feel sad, I spend most of my energy trying to accept the moment for what it is, and feeling content with whatever is happening. Every moment is just passing by anyways, and it’s difficult enough to try to grasp it for just a little bit. I think just maybe, if I lose track of feeling content, then I can easily get lost in happiness or sadness, equally. And I don’t want to do that.
I guess the message that I’m trying to tell the world is that my life hasn’t reached any form of “happy ending”. And I’m okay with that. However trust me, I’m glad that people are happy for me. I want them to be happy, because I know the feeling I get when I see other people’s happiness. It’s great, and I do believe that true happiness is only real when shared.
Life is a journey, and often times it seems like a puzzle with no end. My life until this moment, was filled with an abundance of lessons. Indeed, it took me a decade to be able to actually sit down and write about my life growing up in a doomsday cult. It also took me the better part of the most recent decade to let go of the resentment I had for my mother. But it was in this decade that I started to learn the concept of turning poison into medicine. By no means do I claim to have done that with all the ailments that life has handed me, but I can say I’m conscious about it; and I often contemplate how to do this with those ailments in my day to day life.
Despite my past in a doomsday cult, and despite my complicated relationship with my mother; the opportunities that my journey in life has presented me with, allowed me to experience a lot in these past 29 years. Of course I’ve travelled a bit, but I’m not talking about that.
As I struggled to find myself emotionally, and as I practiced my honesty out loud (so to speak) I ended up sharing a tremendous amount of myself with many people, and as a result, many people have shared a lot with me; a lot.
I have seen many people in their weakest, most exposing moments. Recently I’ve looked back on the relationships I’ve had with people, the moments I’ve shared with them, and the things that they have opened up to me. I’m very thankful for these experiences, because not everyone has the fortune to take part in so many these experiences early in life. For this, I’m thankful that my time spent seeking women in my college years wasn’t solely for materialisms. And even though these relationships no longer exist, the lessons that I’ve learned about mutuality are deep in my heart. Very few people have seen me in my weakest moments, but I have seen enough of others to always keep them a secret. These experiences only make me want to continue being honest and compassionate.
Happiness exists, and so does sadness, but either can be deceptive. So with that, I feel I need to take caution with it. I believe for others it might be different, but for me, it’s not too difficult for me to find myself caught in the lows or the highs. And indeed, my friends know this is true. Just as they say in Brazil, “Do not curse the sun, and do not curse the rain.” Or just as Icarus was instructed to not fly too high or too low, I feel the same with sadness and happiness. Yes, there are times when I’ve gotten stuck in the rain, without an umbrella. But now that I’m getting a little older, I can sometimes find a little more patience for standing back, and watching the clouds before it rains; or before I get lost in the sun’s warmth.
So I suppose I just want to make it clear to my friends and readers, that I haven’t reached any state of constant happiness. Instead, all I hope to achieve is this: to let all those know who I’m trying to reach is that I’m still right here, I’m still Brandon from the U.P. I, like many others am still working on things that I’m guessing many others are still working on. And with that and everything else I have to say, I hope we can all somewhat feel connected through our similarities. Because that’s what I believe happiness is all about: Connection.