I don’t know what to do with this yet. For now I’ll leave it here. I might take it down later, it’s uncomfortable to write.

“Well I’m just pretending perfection
I’m flying uncomfortably high
It feels like I’m falling
It feels like I’m falling
It feels like I’m all in”
- mike posner

Before this happened I was starting to write again. You have to write what you think about. For me this has been happiness. I’ve been trying to learn more about it over the past few years.

I wrote this post (https://www.linkedin.com/…/how-happy-everyday-clinton-buelt…) and read it every day for over a month while I editing it. Things changed drastically for me during this time.

I thought about telling people to read it first thing every morning for a month to see if it helped them too. And then I decided not to.

This is what I did, it’s what worked for me. You don’t have to do any of the things I do. Find what works for you.

The first time I cried:

I left the gym and was walking to work. There is a large homeless population who live on the streets of San Francisco. As walked I saw him up ahead packing the plastic and cardboard he uses for a bed each night.

For three months I walked past this man without saying a word. Sometimes twice a day. He didn’t say anything, he never asked for anything. He just sat there silently watching everything around him.

Was it his silence that drew me to him? Or his samurai sword that leaned up next to where he sat?

It was the sword, it scared me. The more I thought about it, if I slept on the street, I would have a sword too.

This morning was different, I walked by him and started to think. How many times have I walked past him and he has never said anything insulting and never begged me for money. Why have I looked angry each time I walk by?

I passed without saying anything. Then stopped, I knew in my right pocket was $4. Without another thought I went back to him. In a shaky voice with tears welling up, “excuse me sir, I walk past you everyday and I may not say anything but I wanted to let you know that I see you.”

“Everyone sees you. Here, take this, and buy something to eat. Take care of yourself.”

He was shocked, he jumped when I started talking to him. He mumbled okay to me, we shook hands and I had to walk away before I broke down in tears.

He was old enough to be someone’s grandparent. Would you like it if someone treated your grandparents like that?

People need to know that you see them, that you care for them. That you aren’t an angry jerk.

The second time I cried:

The phone rang four times, no answer. I listened to the voicemail. “Dad”…. that’s the only legible word I could get out before I broke. My voice cracked, I couldn’t get out what I wanted to say. I mumbled a few words before hanging up.

I cracked from the inside and started to cry like a child. Taking a deep breath, I called their other number. Again, no answer. I listened to the voicemail, “Mom, I was just calling to…. (I broke again and started to cry) I was just calling…. To tell you I love you.”

I don’t know if the last part was even understandable. I hung up. My phone started ringing, they both were calling me from the same phone. I answered, still crying.

“Are you okay?”

I walked up the street a bit into an alley so no one would see me blubbering. Yes, I’m fine.

“What’s wrong? IS everything okay?”

Yes, yes I’m fine. I was just calling to tell you how much I love you both.

I shocked them too, I think it would scare most people. Maybe it makes you uncomfortable to read this. It doesn’t matter. It’s the truth.

Most people die without hearing “I love you” often enough. If they are lucky you visit them just before they die to say I love you one last time.

I missed the chance to tell her I loved her one last time. She passed away and all I have is our last phone call. I still love her, I’m glad I told her often.

I was writing about happiness when all of this happened. This post isn’t about happiness, this is a love story.

After you study happiness, you learn love.

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