South Kern Sol, Jocelyn Cuevas
How many times have you been asked “What makes you happy?” by someone who genuinely wants to know? While not a question you hear everyday, it does create an opportunity to stop and consider what puts a smile on your face.
We all know there are reasons to be sad, or worried. And there has been increased attention paid to depression and other mental health challenges. The news media, meanwhile, spends most of its time looking at everything wrong with the world. It’s not often you read about a happy event.
Research shows that besides making you feel good, being happy makes us healthier, more productive and generally nicer. Our happiness can be contagious and affect the moods of the people we associate with. Being happy lengthens your life, so there are many reasons to try to be happy! Which is why we thought it important to take a moment to consider what makes people in South Kern happy.
And, in case you are wondering … I got a smile from everyone I put this question to. One person turned it around and asked what makes me happy, to which I answered, ‘Going to school makes me happy because I know I’m making my parents proud and when they are proud I am happy.’
I love spending time with my boyfriend. He makes me laugh so hard … even when we’re going through rough times we are always together.
— Yvette Iraneta, 17
Even though I have foster parents and they aren’t my real parents, they make me feel special and they make me happy.
— Gabriel Diaz, 16
What makes me happy is playing with make-up. I love wearing it. My parents make me happy too. They spoil me and are always there for me.
— Kayra Salcedo, 15
Working out in the gym… it helps me clear my mind during tough times, and it also helps me think about my future.’
— Anthony Aquino, 17
The person who makes me so happy is my best friend. She makes me laugh and is always there for me.’
— Melissa Villalobos, 16
What makes me happy is being part of clubs at school, because I meet new people and that’s always fun.
— Ashley Olmedo, 12
The passion I have in my job here in Mercy Housing, because I spend time with kids and I get to change people’s lives.
— Gloria Morales, 45
I’m happy in the area where I live. I have really friendly neighbors who are really good people. My children make me happy.
— Eliso Hector Lopez Marquez, 60
Making someone happy makes me happy and it makes me feel good about myself.
— Daniel, 18
What makes me happy is playing soccer. I’ve been playing soccer since I was a 2-years old and the fun part is that I get to hang out with my friends afterward.
— Eric Garcia, 12
Jocelyn is a student at Golden Valley High School. She joined South Kern Sol’s youth reporting team in September.