"Are you happy?"

This should have been an easy question, but somehow I don’t know how to answer it truthfully.

I’ll start with this: for everything I have in my life; my home; my friends; my schooling; my opportunities; my experiences; the books I’ve read; the films I’ve watched; the things I’ve done; the places I’ve been; the people I have loved and still love - to have them, I am happy.

When you list all the things that I’ve been given, both the tangible; my computer; the food on the table; the warmth of my bed etc.; and the intangible: being loved by my family; being loved by my friends; being able to watch the sunrise and the sunset, listening to music that breaks my heart - it seems ungrateful that I should even claim to be ‘unhappy’.

But it takes more than the basic level of survival to maintain a happy existence; it takes acceptance of yourself; acceptance by society, excitement in your life, the feeling of being needed without the pressure of having to be there, the feeling of being wanted without needing to question whether you are being used. It takes feeling like you are enough by yourself without adding extensions that always fall off, and being loved but not too hard, and not too soft.

So even though I am lucky there are still times when I find myself sitting in the bathtub with my knees huddled up to my chin. I’m still turbulent as hell. Today I am doing okay, I am doing well. Ask me again tomorrow, I’ll probably tell you something else.