Joy Is A Choice

There was a time in my life where being joyful came easy to me. When it took me less than ten minutes to get out the door (my husband actually told me this was one of his favorite qualities about me) with my headband, boho pants, arms adorned in bracelets, and no makeup-don’t forget the crystals in my bra. I would blow off class to go hiking, biking, or kayaking with my new beau (Clint) at the time. I was up for adventure, trying new foods, being quirky and laughing. I laughed a lot in my younger years, and I was witty. Not as good as Clint, but when I had a comeback for Clint’s jokes, it was good. So much so I laughed so hard I tinkled. Everything in life was joyful!

Lately, I’ve noticed that I’ve been crying myself to sleep because I realized that I’m not the same joyful, carefree person I used to be. Somehow over the years I’ve lost her.

Over the years, our time in the woods and on the water slowly became coaching, working, teaching different martial arts classes and meetings…Lots of meeting. We were stuck indoors. And soon, my heart hardened and it was hard for me to find joy in the everyday.

It’s not that my heart hardened one day and I instantly was this bitter woman that yelled and got irritated with every.little.thing or the one who rolled her eyes when Clint wanted to hit the trails after a long day of work. (we usually got home late, and had so much to prepare for the next day) The hardening kind of just slowly happened. Getting busy and life getting stressful, it was hard to find the joy in daily living. There was a lot less adventures. It was hard to not look at the good things that were happening, and very easy to focus on the negative. Life swallowed me whole.

I had created the life I have always dreamed of, so why wasn’t I joyful?

I forgot the good. The laughter. To seek God’s creation. To pray. To meditate on God’s word. I forgot to choose joy.

If I wait for life to be perfect before I live with joy, I may never be joyful again and that’s not okay.

Having joy is a choice. It’s a choice we have to intentionally make every day as we see the sunrise. It’s a choice when those mundane day’s come. It’s a choice when all you hear from your children is “mom….mom….mom….mom” or the pile of laundry is sitting in the living room for 4 days (okay…5 days).

I forgot to choose joy.

Sweet friends, I am here to push back the darkness that I’ve been part of for so many years. Right here, right now. I am declaring that the darkness, bitterness, and being joyless will not consume my heart anymore. Instead, I will be sharing my life. My story. My transformation to the joyful person I once was. Tory 2.0 . You’ll be seeing more headbands, my boho pants, my arms adorned in bracelets, makeup-less and crystals in my bra…. Oh, and I’ll be having some witty comebacks along the way. I’ll be sharing my beautiful family that God chose for me. I will be sharing the wonders of our outdoor adventures as we take back what was once part of our identity.

I will choose to celebrate the goodness of this life we were given. And lets choose joy, even when it hurts.

I choose J.O.Y.

I chose Joy

Feel Free to download this print for a daily reminder to choose joy everyday.

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