Voices

What makes me happy

A painting of a woman hugging herself.

These past couple of days, I’ve been asking myself a really important question: am I really happy with my life?

These past couple of days, I’ve been asking myself a really important question: am I really happy with my life? I know people view me as someone who is inspiring and someone they can look up to. I’m a motivational speaker and a Top Writer under the ‘Inspiration and Life’ category on Quora. People think that I am happy and positive at all times. Sometimes, that simply isn’t true.

There’s a vast difference between being an optimist and a pessimist. People often think that optimists are always positive about every situation and look for the best in everything. Those people also think that being a pessimist is the exact opposite of being an optimist. Both of these statements are quite true-the terms optimist and pessimist are antonyms.

But what we fail to realise is that these terms are also complex. Both pessimists and optimists think about the pros and cons of any situation, even if the order in which they consider these things may be different. This means that both are realists, despite their differing approaches. I am no different; I too am a realist.

Just like everyone, I have my good days and my bad days. Sometimes I feel very happy and other times I’m sad and I want to be left alone. These past couple of days, I was feeling sad, lonely, and emotional for some reason. I was bored of my routine lifestyle – I wanted to spice things up. I decided that I’d treat myself to some dancing with friends. I called up a club in South Bombay and they said that I couldn’t come because I’m on a wheelchair. They weren’t ready to take any kind of responsibility if something happened to me. I can understand that, but I wasn’t asking them to take responsibility. All I wanted to do was go out dancing with some friends.

That made me even more upset. Rather than being treated like a human being, I was being treated like an object. I realised that it wasn’t just me being treated that way. Many, many people are treated the same way because they’re slightly different; society will always treat people who are different – differently. That thought upset me more. I didn’t want to be different – I wanted to be the same.

I decided to go out dancing anyway. I went to the same place that I called and I danced my heart out. I was the only person there that was on a wheelchair. Amongst short dresses, skirts, and high heels – I was there in my jeans and sequinned top dancing my heart out. People, unknown people came up to me and wanted to dance with me. They didn’t think I was creepy, or stupid because I came out dancing. They treated me like an equal. They danced with me as if I was one of them, and that delighted me.

I realised that being different isn’t wrong, nor is it a sin. Being different is actually beautiful, overwhelming, and charismatic – especially if you know how to be different with confidence. That confidence comes from within, when you’ve accepted that you’re equal to everyone else. It’s especially heartwarming when people your age accept you as an equal.

So what made me happy again? Experiencing that I am equal to everyone else made me think differently of my life and the way I live it. Writing this – something I love doing – made me happy.

Understanding that positivity and negativity are parallel to each other really helped me realise that there isn’t anything wrong with having a bad day from time to time. It’s okay to feel sad, but it’s incredibly important to jump back to the positive side of those parallel lines. Life is definitely better lived with positive thoughts, happiness surrounding you, and love – especially when you love yourself.

Featured image credit: http://goo.gl/O5APBG

About the author

Virali Modi

Virali Modi is a Quora writer, blogger, motivational speaker, aspiring actress, 1st Runner Up of Ms. Wheel Chair India 2014 and a disability rights advocate. Oh, and she forgot to mention that she is disabled, as if that really matters.

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