The Armstrong Family Circus

published and designed by Wiseacre Design Studio

Maineville • Ohio • USA

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I learned to laugh through my tears

Friday September 11th 2009

by Paul Armstrong


You have to make an effort to be happy, to find joy, in the midst of hardships; otherwise a darkness begins to envelop you, swallow you whole; and you find yourself quickly lost on a road you never intended to go down.


Happiness should be easy. Laughing and enjoying life should be the simplest thing in the world, especially when there are so many things to be thankful for. Unfortunately the longer you live, the more truth you learn about people and the world, which squelches all the light and drains the joy you find in life. To have happiness, you have to actively embrace it; find ways to smile, find ways to laugh, find ways to look past the truth and embrace something greater — hope.


The enemy of hope isn't doubt, the enemy of hope is apathy. It's easy to let the darkness of life turn your life into a monotonous, tedious drone of routines, both passionless and lifeless, merely doing things because it things have to be done. I've recently felt myself slipping into these shadows. Slipping into apathy. Sitting on the train but not enjoying the ride. Sure, life is a confusing, frustarting and heartbreaking journey. People will let you down, constantly. People will fail you. No matter race, creed, age; people are people. Without hope, without a sense of which truth matters, the failures of man will become your failures, you're own excuses to be failures. Not all truth leads to hope.


The truth is we all suffer. We all have stories of pain, regret, bad decisions, hurt and deep seeded resentment. We all are petty, vindicative, trite, prideful. We all also are full of mercy, grace, redemption and joy — but only when stop using our collective darkness be our birthright.


I have no idea the direction my journey on these tracks will take me, though I'm free to move about the cabin the train stays on course. I think its time I try to enjoy the ride.


“A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us.” — John Steinbeck




Comments for "I learned to laugh through my tears"

Wow, I haven't come across an article as inspiring as this on in a long time. Your writing is superb and really got me to thinking about how I also need to take some time and "enjoy the ride".

Thanks for such a great article!


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