T.S. Eliot actually wrote that April was the cruelest month but January, you've been hard. Really, really hard. And during difficult times I struggle to write about joy. It's not that I don't experience joy alongside tough times: It's that writing about joy feels trite when people close to me are struggling and when situations as unfathomable as the Syrian refugee crisis exist. But that's a judgement I make for fear of seeming silly, stupid, or--worse--insensitive in the eyes of others, and it's a shame because in the face of hardship, no matter how small or grand, celebrating joy is never a bad thing.
I learned that lesson this week when my mentor and friend--someone who was a treasure to me and to so many people in the jewelry community--suddenly died. Her passing reminded me of how much joy she brought to so many people. In remembering her life everyone recalled her fantastic sense of humor, her warm and wonderful hugs, her keen intelligence, and her gift for creating community. It is because she gave and created so much joy for so many people that we all felt such profound sorrow at her passing.
So I'm casting aside that negative self judgement and getting back to joy. I will find it on the best days, and on the most challenging days, because even the smallest joys are worth celebrating.
My name is Judi and I make sustainable fine jewelry. I wake up happy every day because I'm able to do what I love for a living.