ESSAY | LIFE LESSONS | SELF-IMPROVEMENT

Contentment

Learning to be content wherever you may be

Photo by Ricardo Arce on Unsplash

When I read the story that Diana C. posted for us to ponder upon, two things came to mind:

Home is wherever you happen to be at that moment.

Be content where you are now because you are precisely where you are meant to be.

I have struggled with both of these lessons most of my life.

There is the old adage, Home is where the heart is, and this has always troubled me. Mainly because I’ve rarely found any place to be where my heart rejoiced just for being there. In fact, I’ve only experienced that kind of bliss twice — once when I’d found an adorable apartment and had the funds to actually decorate it the way I wanted, and that time my then-lover created a beautiful home setting for me that ironically only lasted about six months — the home and the relationship.

I never felt joy or bliss when I lived at home with my parents and siblings. All the apartments I lived in prior to the one I found and fixed up my way, never truly felt like home. They were all too small and I worked so much, I rarely had time to enjoy being at home. They were more like changing studios for some scripted life I was living during those times.

I thought returning to my childhood home to help my father six years ago would have been blissful. My mother had already passed and my father was getting up there in age. And I missed the mountains of Virginia. Sadly, the four years I lived there and helped him were anything but blissful (not because of my father, but because of my brother). I had more heartaches there than at any time since my childhood.

I also had a wandering spirit for most of my early life. I bounced around a lot; never content to be in one place long enough to settle. This included relationships and jobs, as well as housing.

It wasn’t until I returned to Oklahoma two years ago that I learned both of these lessons simultaneously. I was exhausted from too many journeys, too many family squabbles, too many relationships — just too much of everything. I was finally ready to be content back in Oklahoma and back in the tiny house I shared with my spouse.

It only took me fifty years to realize that home is wherever I am and it is up to me to make myself happy and content because I am exactly where I am supposed to be in that moment. All those years I spent longing to be somewhere else to find my bliss were wasted years I could have spent being blissful. All it took was a change in mindset and attitude, and a little rest.

©2020 Lori Carlson. All Rights Reserved.

Diana C.’s lovely story that prompted this piece:

Lori Carlson writes poetry, fiction, articles and personal essays. Most of her topics are centered around Relationships, Spirituality, Life Lessons, Mental Health, and the LGBTQ+ community. In addition to writing for Know Thyself, Heal Thyself, Lori writes for sixteen other publications here on Medium. Check out her personal Medium blog — Ravyne’s Nest.

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𝘈𝘶𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘪𝘤𝘪𝘵𝘺, 𝘷𝘶𝘭𝘯𝘦𝘳𝘢𝘣𝘪𝘭𝘪𝘵𝘺, 𝘢𝘸𝘢𝘳𝘦𝘯𝘦𝘴𝘴 & 𝘨𝘳𝘰𝘸𝘵𝘩 𝘵𝘩𝘳𝘰𝘶𝘨𝘩 𝘴𝘵𝘰𝘳𝘺𝘵𝘦𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘯𝘨, 𝘴𝘩𝘢𝘳𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘰𝘧 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘴𝘰𝘯𝘢𝘭 𝘦𝘹𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘪𝘦𝘯𝘤𝘦𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸𝘭𝘦𝘥𝘨𝘦 𝘰𝘯 𝘴𝘱𝘪𝘳𝘪𝘵𝘶𝘢𝘭 𝘮𝘢𝘵𝘵𝘦𝘳𝘴.

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Ravyne Hawke

Writing Coach, Poet, Fiction Writer, Essayist, Artist, Dreamer | “Enlightenment is when a wave realizes it is the Ocean” ~Thich Nhat Hanh