The Significance Project By: Kandy Layman

Happiness can have so many meanings. To me happiness is a choice, only you can make yourself truly happy. For myself happiness is being healthy and alive and sharing all your waking moments with the ones you love. Happiness is having stability in my life and knowing that no matter what I do or how I feel on certain days that I’ll be okay. Happiness and feeling successful is seeing my children grow into responsible adults and doing what’s right for themselves and others. There are times I may feel broken, but I know that I am truly a happy person once I stop and reflect on the accomplishments that I have made throughout my life. I have been very fortunate in my life to have a stable career, children that are smart, healthy, caring, and goal oriented, but one thing in my life that I feel would complete my bubble of happiness would to have a loving and caring relationship and of course grandbabies.

When I think of suffering I think of the loss of my mother, I think of pain. She did not suffer or have pain, but I myself felt the power of pain and hurt. This to me defines suffering. It’s not about the physical traits of suffering, it’s about the emotionally pain brought on by just one instance and can yet be gone by another, such as happiness. I think suffering can act as a positive part in anyone’s life. It allows you to feel pain, hurt, compassion and understanding to others who may be suffering at times and to open your mind and heart to the world around you.

Life? What is life? Life is pure existence in this place called earth. It means to be lived to be loved and is sacred, that is meaningful. Life gives you purpose and opportunity to show the world who you are. Not everyone may see you, but the ones who truly care will. Life is an opportunity to build a meaningful relationship or life with others. Life is about success, dedication and believing in yourself. I believe to live a meaningful life it starts with happiness and choosing our own purpose. This can be achieved by many things like serving and protecting our country, serving the Lord, by one’s job, or even just to be present to inspire one another to just live life to the fullest you can.

“Suffering is not like recovering from a disease. Many people don’t come out healed; they come out different.” – David Brooks

There is more to life than success, material riches and achieving your dreams. I would rather be the one helping people to be successful and achieve their dreams, but in our society, you’re always left feeling useless or like nothing when you don’t have the success and materialistic things like others. Society seems to judge you for what you have and who you know rather than who you are and what you have to offer society. I try to show my children that even though money and materialistic things may help fill the void of true happiness without the love of family and friends all the money in world couldn’t ever make up for that type of happiness in life.

“Everyone is born with moral imagination — a need to feel that life is in service to some good.” - David Brooks

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