Too many joy rides in daddy’s jaguar

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When I had a broken leg during freshman year, I was as happy as I’d ever been in my entire life. In those times when I couldn’t even walk up the stairs or shower on my own, I took my friends and family as being enough to make me happy, because I didn’t expect to have those other parts of my life present.

But, when I got healthier, I forgot how those simple things could truly be enough.

Why I was happier with a broken leg than with a healthy one used to make no sense. But, as it turns out, there’s a switch that turns on in all of us when we are given so much opportunity, and it can make us crazy.

We lose sight of how we were okay with what we used to have because we view these new, empty aspects of our life as a gateway to our feeling of unhappiness, even though in reality, our lives aren’t even that much different than before.

If you’re trying to figure out how we got to the point where so many of us seek for more in our lives despite already having so much, like living in one of the more affluent communities in the country, look no further than the line from The Book of Luke, “To whom much is given, from him much is expected.”

With lots of money or good health comes high expectations, and by telling ourselves that we need certain things in order to make our days worthwhile and to make us happy, we essentially set ourselves up for disappointment. Lots of times, these high expectations are set by no one other than ourselves.

We complain about how annoying college supplemental essays are, even though in reality, we should be grateful for the opportunity to be writing them in the first place. We complain about our “crappy” ACT scores that won’t get us into Michigan or Northwestern, even though we know that people succeed at other good schools. We complain about how Instagram is blocked on the school wifi even though…well…I guess I don’t really even need to explain how that one is stupid. And the list just goes on and on.

Our culture traps us into thinking certain things are key to our happiness, but a lot of that is BS. You can be happy without a million friends, fifty comments on your instagram posts, 10 AP classes, 100 snapchat streaks, a 35 on your ACT, and a starting position on varsity basketball. Trust me, it’s possible.

In case you’ve been living under a rock for the last six years (just kidding), “too many joy rides in daddy’s jaguar” is a line from Frank Ocean’s song titled “Super Rich Kids.”

The song starts with a teenager staring at the view from his penthouse’s roof in the morning, and it ends with him jumping off of the same roof that night.

That’s pretty intense, I know, but to a much lesser extent, it’s kind of relatable: we admire the luxuries we are presented with at times, but when things start to go downhill, we forget about how the basic things that truly make us happy are still present in our lives.

I’ve deceived myself into thinking that I need little dumb things to happen in my life in order for me to be able to look out on the roof at the end of the day and not be disappointed, but I keep forgetting that I’ve already proven to myself that this simply isn’t true.

I know the point isn’t that we’ve been having too many joy rides in daddy’s jaguar. The point is that these joy rides in daddy’s jaguar will never make us truly happy, and we shouldn’t let wealth, privilege or anything get in the way of that.

Many of us have been given most of the tools for a great life, and instead of trying to have a great life through them, let’s try to have a great life with them.

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