I am busy and complainy about it. I want nothing more than to write lists and check them off again. When I think of my life, what I might say about what is going on right now, it is all the to-do-list, as ever, whenever I stop any more to think about it and write it out. Occasionally there is the drama between friends, which I cannot blog or really journal as it is not my own drama, but theirs. Or there is the strife and struggle of marriage which is decidedly not good entertainment for anyone other than my poor damaged heart. It needs its privacy and no ears but good friends. Most usually, there is the struggle of children and my feelings about everything with them and how that grows and changes and drives me crazy. But I have the other blog for working that out and feel that I must do so there.

So what I am left with is my own constant struggle to define myself by outside activity - by the writing and the arting and the constant volunteer work. The hum is getting louder by the minute with the volunteer work just now. There is also the whole life to organize and predict and arrange for. I have not the disposable income to outsource all that grief and oftentimes there is much to be haggled over, rather than merely purchased. The efficiencies of capitalism have sadly created infinite bureaucracies that I navigate alone in a sea of the alone.

I was thinking about joy and cultivating joy. It's something I like to say with deep sarcasm - "cultivating joy." It's a phrase I roll my eyes at quite dramatically. It's a bit of an inside joke at this point. It is not to say that there is anything wrong with actually working to cultivate joy, if that's your thing, and the rolling of eyes is not to say that I do not actively seek to be happy myself. It's just a matter of being an incredibly sarcastic person, focused mainly on the obstacles to certain paths rather than the great journey of getting there. I see obstacles as opportunities for problem solving, which is serious work, rather than as fantastic adventure.

Actually, I say all that, but I've not yet been able to articulate what it is that so supremely annoys me about endless optimism. I suppose it's a sense of entitlement. That one would expect the good outcome seems hopelessly naive to me rather than as a method of manifestation. I don't believe in the universe. I do not buy the secret laws of attraction. There is no logic in it because there is too much suffering by the innocent for it to be so. In my mind, it is a mark of utter, blind privilege. And to that end, I instead view the world as a struggle. I expect the worst so as to create the best possible outcome rather than to be disappointed.

Yet I am in the place I always wanted to be in. I have arrived quite fully into the life I had planned. It's just not quite done, so I have a hard time recognizing it at any given moment. I see my children, I see their joy, I sense their adventure and I try my best to give them the freedom to be with that, to feel it. Yet inevitably, I fail. I come down on the truth of an act or event with far more harshness than is at all necessary. Or I skate the edge. It is not every moment, but I am not perfect by any means. And my sarcasm and downer attitude tell you that ahead of time. You know what to expect around here. We are not perfect. We are not perfectly happy, we do not excel at bliss. We excel at reality and at laughing terribly hard at it. We offer our guffaws and our chuckles and our cackles up in open mockery to the universe. I'm convinced the universe loves us for it.