I should lead off this blog by noting that I have significantly slowed updates for tampabayonashoestring.com. There just isn't the kind of demand for that site to replace my time spent on it. I am also slowing my activities that was meant to build it up. There are a couple reasons for that. First.. I need to work, and the last few weeks of doing 6-7 things a week was lost work time, even if they didn't cost that much. Second, Tampa Bay is a big place, and it would take a LONG time to really make that site reflective enough of the city for others to use.. still a goal but will plan to have the site operational by mid year next year and not within weeks. Once enough is on the site, I can promote it as a whole without having to add to it all the time. Finally, my OWN HAPPINESS is MY goal, and as the holidays come I am more aware than ever that I need someone with which I can share romantic memories for these time periods. So, that's where I am putting my focus.
Forward to Happiness
I titled this blog post the blog name, because it's kinda like when artists do it. They are going back to the basics. I am doing the same. It does not mean that recent realizations are less valid. In part, they are WHY I am doing it and remain true. I still do not intent to become something that I am not for someone. In fact, I've decided to be more vocal about my opinions on things. I saw several people after the election from Cher to Navitalova say that it's great to live in a country where we have a voice. That hasn't been true for everyone or every voice's opinions. I am someone that shares opinions from different sides, but I've been VERY aware...whether it be in my former teaching position, dating apps, or just on social media that I must censor certain opinions that I have, because they are not popular. Freedom means that as they said EVERYONE has a voice.. and every opinion. Others can then choose what to receive and what to scroll by or ignore. It also doesn't mean rejecting others. I have friends and have had romantic partners with which I disagreed on things. Having a different opinion doesn't mean you reject a person... indeed, it is important to expose yourself to other opinions and consider them. However, that does not mean you have to agree with them to receive something from them. For a long time, there has been a residing belief that one side was the "right" point of view and the other is the "wrong" point of view, and we see that on both sides. The reality is that reality or truth is the combination of the opinions and experiences of ALL people, and we cannot fully know it unless we are open to consider them all for our own personal choices.
The first word of this blog name was chosen and is used not to mean that you can't have happiness TODAY. It means that our choices should be made to pick options that lead us to happy outcomes. Yes, I began the blog after my ex and I got a divorce. That is one way of thinking about it, indeed. There WAS happy days for me in that marriage, BUT it didn't lead to a happy outcome and would not.. so it is not a future choice. The fact is that she was unwilling or unable to initiate acts or words of romance to me for the whole marriage, and she has not made any effort afterwards, either. Not ironically, I was going to not message her back after the first week, because she had not made an effort to message me after my initial efforts. I told someone that it was a sign of whether they would be an active participate in the romance. They convinced me to give her another shot, but that lack never changed and was a major part in the ending and after. So, of course, FORWARD to Happiness makes sense, there. I've had other examples of dating and messaging and such where the other person made no effort and thus was things from which I also moved FORWARD from. But, it is also a comfort to know that when things bad happened in the past it only means the REAL solution lies ahead.
I also chose Happiness to be a focus, because I learned from past romantic or work situations that people often only want you for what you can do to them. If you sacrifice for someone for years and years and then STOP benefiting them, you often find yourself completely cut off as if you never existed or the joys from it ever happened. What is the point of a happy moment, if you can't share it with them years in the future or of acts of sacrifice for a company that doesn't even remember you weeks after you did so much for them. You have to focus on your own happiness, if you want it to actually exist. That will be my focus.. both in how I live my work days and with whom I share personal, intimate moments like cuddling, watching tv, going to events, or just having someone that will listen and care about the thins you have to vent or celebrate.
Solomon from the bible repeated many times one thing in Ecclesiastes. Here is one time he said it..
"Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do. Always be clothed in white, and always anoint your head with oil. Enjoy life with your wife, whom you love, all the days of this meaningless life that God has given you under the sun—all your meaningless days. For this is your lot in life and in your toilsome labor under the sun." Ecc 9:7-10
So, I plan to follow this advice and the mission of this blog and live my life AS MY LIFE and enjoy the days I have, as long as I have them.