For most of my life I have been troubled by a conflict between an optimistic heart and a nature that tends towards despair. I tend to see the best in the others while seeing the worst in myself. I know many others with similar world views and to greater and lesser degrees we deal with these conflicts by simply surviving them. For me, I'm lucky in that I see more blue sky than gray clouds.
I have a few little tricks that I do when things go suddenly dark. I teach people with disabilities coping strategies for a variety of issues, I decided that I needed coping strategies for my life as well. So, here's what I do ...
Beside my computer (and I know I'm taking a risk in telling you all this) I have a teeny tiny music box, about the size of a match box, with a tiny handle that turns a spindle inside. It gently plays 'Somewhere Over The Rainbow' by plucking out tiny notes. It's a thing that gives me much pleasure and a very simple kind of peace. I play it when I'm writing something difficult, when I'm working through a problem and when I'm feeling like having a slice of doom cake. It has been playing a fair bit the last couple of days.
I went for a long walk up Yonge Street stopping to look in windows. Just south of us there is a shop that has a thousand and one broaches that cover the bottom part of an old style wedding dress. The settings are all wildly eccentric. High heeled shoes. Martini glasses. Dragonflys. I like to stop and admire them but never do, except, on days where my mood seems to need a bit of decoration. I would never buy one of them, even so, I feel like Tiny Tim looking longingly into the toy shop window, an image that always, oddly, lifts my spirits.
Should these two things not work, I need to do something much more drastic. I need oatmeal. With a bit of milk and brown sugar. Real brown sugar. I need to simply enjoy the feeling of absolute bliss that this brings me. I reserve oatmeal to use as a PRN for days when bitter overtakes the sweet. Joe knows that when I ask for oatmeal that it's a bleak time for me. He makes me a bowl of oatmeal, not instant, and brings it to me with just the right amount of sugar, just the right dribble of milk. I can't imagine a wound on my soul that porridge can't make feel just a little bit better.
So, I'm curious. What do you do when you wake up with the icks? What are your strategies? I've shared mine ... your turn.