Life is hard.
The sooner we learn and embrace that fact, the better off we are.
It's going to be complicated most of the time and happiness comes in intervals.
So embrace happiness hard and fast.
Because joy can be sucked out of your life in the blink of an eye.
Not trying to be sour, just truthful.
Redditor Nolan asked about the times people were left with nothing but a frown:
"What stole your joy? Why do you not have the same zest for life that you once did?"
I feel like my joy was taken with age. But I'm a downer.
Evil WinsI Did A Thing GIFGiphy
"Knowing Bad people win. Not like in movies I enjoy watching. Heroes are silenced or killed early on and the scummiest die peacefully getting away with everything."
F the Big C
"Incurable, inoperable brain cancer at 36."
"Edit: diagnosed at 34, not 36."
"Hey Hey, mine was at 30, still here 7 years later... no idea how long its been for you BUT although it was always on my mind pretty constantly for the first 4 years, now I have long periods of time (hours, a day) without really thinking about it (and not because of my brain friend chipping away at my memory)!"
"Chronic illness and chronic pain!"
"8 years ago I ate some bad shrimp and got a 3 day long case of food poisoning... and then never got better."
"I've had an 8 year battle with ME/CFS and lost the majority of my 20s to it."
"The pain of knowing that no matter what I do, no matter what happens now, I can never get these years back, takes something from me that I can't explain in words, and knowing that it's going to take more of them is even worse."
Passion into Work
"I turned my hobby into my profession. Now I don't have a hobby anymore and I enjoy doing what I do less now that I need to do it in order to get money."
"I studied Physics and Astronomy because I had a passion for it as a child. The coursework was extremely difficult, which was okay. The gatekeeping attitude from professors and peers is what killed it for me."
"I was constantly reminded that I was not smart enough to be worth anything in the field. I completed my degree absolutely burnt out and devoid of my initial love. Years later I came back to astronomy as the hobbyist I initially was and accepted that I was much happier not trying to be a professional."
ZappedJames Earl Jones Reaction GIFGiphy
"Upon my husband's death, I learned he lived a double life and had given our savings and my children's college funds to his paramour. Fortunes come and go, but stealing 25 years of my life to live his lies, zapped my joy."
Death really is the worst. I hate death.
PainHeadache I Cant GIF by Solomon RayGiphy
"IIHC. Idiopathic Intercranial Hypertension."
"Constant headaches, head pressure, Tinnitus, and vision issues."
"Idiopathic, means they don't know sh*t about anything. Just 'try these meds for 3 months and come back.'"
It broke me...
"Loss... I lost my dad to cancer. This set off a lot of issues with my mom, depression, alcoholism, medicine abuse, and I was in a different city far away doing my master thesis. I was 23 and I don't have any siblings. It broke me. I used to go around with a smile on my face by default, but that disappeared."
"I've found lots of joy afterwards, but it sure was an experience I still suffer from."
"Being blind. Realizing no matter how good I become at something, able bodied people will and are better. Realizing that I can be an amazing something and never get anything more than you are good for a blind person."
"F**k, that hit me hard. I am only half blind, and have mild cerebral palsy, but I've always been utter s**t at any physical activities. I started doing karate, and despite working hard for the past couple of years."
"There's still not a single mildly experienced able-bodied person I can defeat. I've lost all joy in it because I know I'll never be good enough. I'm too tired to even try anymore. And I know it'll be like that with any physical activity I try, which is absolutely crushing as I am a very competitive person by nature."
"Spouse and 3 kids died in an accident. People said it would take time to feel joy again, but it’s been over a decade now without much change."
"I enjoy little things from day to day now, but there’s no larger point anymore. Life is mostly just a chore."
"Halloween made 5 years since my wife and son died. She was 8 months pregnant. He was our first. He died 35 hours later in the NICU. You are absolutely correct. I don't have nor can I find 'big picture' happiness. Just the random day to day uptick that is welcome, but I know it is temporary."
HopelessFrustrated Kill Me GIFGiphy
"The realization that no matter what I do, no matter how many hours I work, I'll still never be able to get ahead. Working just to have little to nothing to show for it doesn't feel great."
Well this is a lot. Why is joy hard? But we're rooting for you and your happiness, dear reader.
Do you have any "joy zaps" to add? Let us know in the comments.