It’s a common belief that positive thinking leads to a happier, healthier life. As children we are told to smile, be cheerful, and put on a happy face. As adults we are told to look on the bright side, to make lemonade, and see glasses as half full. Sometimes reality can get in the way of our ability to act the happy part though. Your hope can fail, boyfriends can cheat, friends can disappoint. It’s in these moments, when you just want to get real, drop the act, and be your true scared unhappy self.
It’s not always easy to speak your mind. Sometimes you need to be forced to do it. Sometimes it’s better to just keep things to yourself though. Play dumb. Even when your whole body is aching to come clean. So you shut your mouth. Keep the secret. And find other ways to make yourself happy.
There’s a reason I said I’d be happy alone. It wasn’t ‘cause I thought I’d be happy alone. It was because I thought if I loved someone and then it fell apart, I might not make it. It’s easier to be alone. Because what if you learn that you need love and then you don’t have it? What if you like it and lean on it? What if you shape your life around it and then it falls apart? Can you even survive that kind of pain? Losing love is like organ damage. It’s like dying. The only difference is death ends. This? It could go on forever.
Maybe we’re not supposed to be happy. Maybe gratitude has nothing to do with joy. Maybe being grateful means recognizing what you have for what it is. Appreciating small victories. Admiring the struggle it takes simply to be human. Maybe we’re thankful for the familiar things we know. And maybe we’re thankful for the things we’ll never know. At the end of the day, the fact that we have the courage to still be standing is reason enough to celebrate.
Meredith Grey - ‘Thanks for the Memories’ (Season 2, Episode 9)