Furiously Happy (choosing to be/a book review)

About a month ago I received an email about a promotion that Audible was doing in which, if you submitted a 30-second video clip about why you love Audible, you could potentially win a free car. Considering my rust-bucket of a vehicle was on its last legs, I thought, what the heck, I’ve got the app and have listened to a book, maybe I should give it a shot? So I downloaded a book I had been wanting to listen to, and plotted my way to a new car…so I thought. But what happened was a gift better than a new car — it was a new look on life.

While I never got around to creating a 30-second video on time before the deadline to submit. I did listen to a fantastic book by Jenny Lawson entitled “Furiously Happy.” I laughed, I cried. It was fantastic. Truly. There was one day that my roommate came home and I was sitting at the kitchen table with my phone out, the book playing, and I’m sitting there sobbing because of how moving her story was.

Jenny’s autobiographical comedic tale is her story of triumph and struggle with her mental illnesses. It’s her second book (which I was unaware of and am now listening to the first). It was a game-changer for me.

But why the title? Jenny describes one point in her life where to decides to be “furiously happy” — to have adventures and create amazing moments and memories so that in the depths of depression she will be sustained by those memories of crazy adventures and good times. This quote shows her quirky personality:

“I’m fucking done with sadness, and I don’t know what’s up the ass of the universe lately but I’ve HAD IT. I AM GOING TO BE FURIOUSLY HAPPY, OUT OF SHEER SPITE. … I’m going to destroy the goddamn universe with my irrational joy…”

Ha! How great is that? I’m telling you — I laughed so many times while listening to this book. And I also had a complete paradigm shift. I now choose to live furiously happy.

There are so many great things I could share about this book. But really all I am going to say now is this: Buy it. Read it. Listen to it. Soak it up. Laugh. Cry. Enjoy it. I know I did. You will not regret it.

…but the sad part is. I did not win the car. Haha. And my car’s transmission was on the verge of dying…so I decided to part with Elena the Elantra and welcome to my heart, LaFawnduh (named after Kip’s love from “Napolean Dynamite). LaFawnduh is a 2009 Honda Fit. Here she is getting gas for the first time!

Petting the sea creatures at the zoo.

I’ve had some other pretty fun and happy and furious things happening in my life lately. I just returned from a family trip to Tacoma, Washington. My parents surprised me by buying tickets to visit my brother and his family with them for a week-long trip. It was just the get-away that I needed! We spent a good deal of time relaxing and just hanging out. I had great quality conversations with Ben over some beers, with Kristen while getting pampered with massages, and with mom while shopping. Dad and I even got to bake some pies! And Ayla and I read a million books together. A perfect week in the rainy state of Washington.

Also — I am moving! I moved a few days ago temporarily into my parents’ place because I got my own little place within walking distance of my work and I could not be more thrilled. I will be in the same building as a dear friend of mine. I will have a gas burning stove top (eee!) and have a pool this summer! Could life get any better?! So, in the meantime, so that I don’t have to pay rent there, a security deposit, and rent with my old roomie, I’m crashing with my parents until I can move in on the 20th. #cannotwait

And last but certainly not least…I have started a new diet. Ughh. Not because I want to lose weight but because I want to have a normal…”system.” Haha. I have started the low-FODMAP diet, as recommended by my GI doc.  Click here to learn more about the low-FODMAP diet and click here for the book that I bought to follow as my guide for recipes and a 14-day meal plan that so far, has been fantastic. My amazing friend and co-worker, Emily, has been so supportive and has joined me in doing this diet. She is a great accountability partner, and also happens to be a great cook. So that has been helpful. Essentially, this diet will (hopefully) help solve my gut issues that I’ve had since 2009. Fingers-crossed!

So that’s life as of late. It’s been a crazy-beautiful and furiously happy journey. Thanks for joining in. Hope all is well, my friends.

emily alma