I've mentioned once or twice that I'm a pretty happy person. It's one of my top five identifiers (along with "floofy" and "fantastic dancer"), and I'll admit that I spend around 80 percent of my time smiling.
Yes, I'm usually in a good mood. Oddly enough, however, I'm occasionally not in a "happy" mood. It's not always sunshine and rainbows in these here parts, and I do have a full spectrum of emotions that I use quite regularly.
Recently, people around me have taken to assuming that if I'm not happy, something is incredibly wrong. They take a lack of a smile on my part as a sign that the universe is imploding and we'll all be wiped off the face of the planet within minutes.
Okay, that may be a bit dramatic. However, a phrase I hear quite often is this: "Why aren't you smiling? It's weird, quit being sad and start being happy."
So, I'm taking a moment to reply, to everyone who's said something like this to me and to everyone who might feel the need in the future, this statement: there's a clear distinction between being constantly happy and being consistently happy.
The Oxford Living Dictionary defines "happy" as the "feeling or showing pleasure or contentment." Whether used as an adjective or a verb, this joyful word is usually characterized by smiling and not being sad. Being constantly happy means having this feeling continuously, day in and day out.
Sorry, not sorry, but that's not me. Sometimes life sucks, and there's nothing I can feel/show pleasure or contentment about.
Not trying to be a Debby Downer here, but it's true. Sometimes I'm frustrated about something that happened at work, sometimes I'm sad about an ASPCA commercial I just saw, and sometimes I'm mad about a dude who just cut me off while I'm driving.
Instead, I'd like to say (or write) that I'm consistently happy. I'm regularly happy, and if one would look at my attitude overall, they'd be able to agree. However, this doesn't exclude the instances where I'm not feeling "happy."
Moral of the story: I'm happy like 87 percent of the time. Don't invalidate that other 13 percent by saying that I have to be happy because it's "weird" for you. Instead, maybe ask me what's wrong or at least respect that I have emotions like a normal person.
Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.