Things that make me happy

Mum and I went to see Gyles Brandreth in his one man snow Looking for Happiness this evening. It wasn’t what I was expecting but it was was really good. The only reason it wasn’t what I was expecting was because I didn’t really know much about him in advance of the show tonight and was expecting something a little more stand up like. Some of his stories I’d not heard of the people he mentioned but unlike with some other acts when I’ve been too young to know some of the things or people they were talking about that didn’t matter.

I picked up a copy of his book after the show and he signed it for me. When I told him my name he said “Emma, they should write a book about you.” And I asked what it would be about, expecting him to say something which could only be categorised as inspiration porn. He said it would be “Emma: Her Story.”

During the show he asked a few people what made them happy. Most of them said family, children, husband, grandchildren. During the interval mum said her first thought had been cake.

My first thought for what makes me happy was sailing, because that’s the sort of thing you can tell people and it doesn’t require any explanation about what it is and people don’t look at you like you’re weird. Plus it does make me happy. Often I’ll go on the water and by the time I come in I’ll feel a lot calmer and better about things. I sometimes think a few people who know I sail but have never been there or seen me so it think it’s a much bigger part of my life than it is though. I may be selling it/myself short there though.

Then my next thought was that my wheelchair makes me happy. In many ways that’s probably the thing that makes me happiest. The manual and the power but in different ways. Because the manual gives me my mobility and my independence but my powerchair gives me my freedom.

So on my way home I was thinking of what makes me happy. Here is my not conclusive list in no particular order other than what they came to mind as I was typing this.

My family
My friends
My manual chair
My powerchair
Feeling that I’ve made a difference
Putting loud music on and singing along
Going to new places
Feeling I belong
Disability culture
Time to myself
Jacket potatoes done in the oven so they have crispy skins smothered in cheese
Dyeing my hair bright colours
Painting my nails
Watching live parasport
Learning new things

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