"I'm not happy. I'm not a happy person. And I'd challenge you to ask yourself whether you're actually happy."
I paused for half a second, then answered, "Yep. I'm happy."
"I don't see how you can say that."
"Other than what's going on right here, which obviously sucks? Yeah, I'm happy. Everything else in my life is great. I have great friends, I have two awesome dogs, I look around this house and love the way everything looks, and I feel great. Happy."
I don't think he believed me on that afternoon a few months ago, and I don't think he'd believe me now if he asked again, but I know it's true.
I've been catching myself whistling as I walk to the cafeteria. When people ask me how I'm doing, I reply, "I'm good!" and don't have to force it. People tell me that there's a brightness about me now.
The biggest happiness tell is that I sing. I find myself scrolling through my music player before I get on the road, making sure that I have a good selection of songs in my range queued up. I sing most of the way to work in the morning, and all the way home. I make up jingles and serenade the dogs while I'm getting their dinner ready. It just comes bubbling out.
Yesterday, stopped at a crowded traffic light and belting out 'More Than a Feeling' while accompanying the clap track by pounding on my dashboard, I started laughing. "You're welcome, fellow commuters! There's no way this isn't f&$king hilarious. When I hear that old song play...more than a feelin'..."
"I challenge you to ask yourself whether you're actually happy."
Challenge accepted, and I've already won.