Being Happy Where You Are

Odessa Denby
4 min readDec 28, 2022

Cultivating the ultimate life skill…

Photo by Kawin Harasai on Unsplash

In 2020, I wanted nothing more than to escape. I had moved back to the US in 2017 with plans to move abroad again within a year or two. And then I was more stuck than ever, it seemed, with the pandemic cutting me off from even little weekend excursions. The was no end in sight and by January 2022 I was having what can only be described as a depressive episode.

For the uninitiated, that doesn’t mean I was feeling a bit sad or grumpy. It means I had reached a level of total numbness. Just being alive took so much energy. I sat on the couch most of the time, exhausted from even doing basic necessary tasks. I felt hopeless.

I’ve written a lot about travel on this site and a lot about my mental health. I’ve also read a good deal of work by other authors on similar subjects. Basically, since returning to America and getting sucked into having debt (yes, I know, some of you have never had a single cent of debt and you think it’s immoral that I do, but when you have no support from your family and need a car to even get a low-paying job, debt can easily happen), I had been feeling like my happiness was on hold.

From one bad apartment to another, from one underpaying job to another, paying the minimum on credit cards-- I felt like America had won. It had me trapped. And now, I would never have…

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Odessa Denby

Professional writer and editor, former expat. Conscientious lifestyle and relationships, mental health, and the arts.