Amy wanted to know "what brings you joy"? I have been trying to come up with a good answer to that one for a few days. It's easy to say my family because they bring me the most profound joy. After some minor (very minor) teenage turbulence, my girls have grown into lovely women. My relationship with them brings me joy. I am always amazed that they seek out my company. I am their mother but it feels like we can become friends as well.
Coming home at the end of a work day when I managed to make it through the bureaucratic red tape that is social work in the 21st century and actually helped someone. This brings me joy. Most of the time my job is paperwork and phone calls. But sometimes there is real human contact where I can make a positive difference in someone's life. When one of my clients says "thanks. talking to you always lifts me up and makes things better" then I know that I am doing what I was meant to do. This brings me joy. I can't imagine doing anything else. (Although I need to remind myself this when the phone rings and the paperwork calls!)
Finding a gift and giving it to someone gives me joy. I love to listen all year when someone says "I would really like ...." and then hunt it down and watch their face as they open the gift on Christmas morning, or for a birthday. Surprises like that bring me joy.
The new friends I have made this last year writing this blog. You all bring me joy. I have laughed and cried with you. We have celebrated victories and commiserated over losses. It is a world of support that I was not aware of and now cherish.
Music brings me joy. The Fur Elise by Beethoven has brought me to tears. Hearing the Star Spangled Banner or America the Beautiful sung by a crowd makes me cry with joy for the wonderful dream that is our country. It's still there under the cynicism.
Watching my husband gives me joy. He is so darn cute most of the time. A 12 year old who refuses to grow up, an appreciative man who still thinks I am beautiful, a father who tried so hard to be the best he could be, a friend who I can grow old with and with whom I am never bored.
Learning new skills, meeting new people, reading new books, smelling new yarn, touching old furniture, looking at old paintings, golden days and starlit nights, camping in the woods, stories around the campfire with the light golden on my children's faces.....all these things bring me joy.
My children tease me because I believe what Walt Whitman said about there being a miracle in every square inch of creation. Well, there is an awful lot of joy in there, too.