Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Beasts Beckon

The thing about depression and anxiety is that no matter what triggers them, you have to accept them and embrace them as living and breathing and almost as if they are a separate but intrinsically connected division of yourself.

It is the Hap Happiest Time of the Year...I know it is.  I just wrote about it last week.  But it seems that the beasts within me are very in tune with that and like to challenge it every time I acknowledge my contentment.  My happiness is therefore dependent on how responsive Depression and Anxiety are within me.

Sure enough, the nightmares are back this week.  Disrupting sleep, and well, just plain invading my life.  And with as much as I have going on (the trigger) the absolute last thing I have time for in this life are the anchors which are depression and anxiety.  Still here they are.  Screaming loud and clear for only me to hear.  Last night the dream was so vivid I cried out several times in my sleep and woke up the husband.

It's not fair.  And it's just that simple.  But it's my cross to bear and I have to figure out how to battle it back just a little while longer, then it can have me for a week or so in January...hear that depression - can you just hold out til then?  Actually, let me get through the rest of this fiscal quarter, til I can haul in a good performance review and (fingers crossed) a decent raise for next year.  Really need the reprieve buddy.  Just a year - please?  Pretty please?  I'd like to feel happy and enjoyment in my marriage, in my home, in my limited parenting skills...just for a while.  I'd like to get just a quick taste of liking my job for just the briefest of moments...you know, to remember what it was like to enjoy working.

Please - just back off a while.I need at least a short period of forgetting what it's like to live with you both.  Maybe I'll come to appreciate the grounding in reality that I get from carrying you both around all the time...Maybe then I'll come to want some of the whacky "unreality" of what you want me to believe.  But right now - I just want a bit of naivete back.  A little bit of "ignorance is bliss"...please.  Pretty please.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Hap Happiest Time of the Year

Well folks, tis that time of year again where the magic of giving and receiving and celebrating is descending upon us like that welcome blanket complete with the rope and the big rock it's all attached to that are going to yank us into the dark abyss of a lake, surprisingly not very far from here.

Yep...I'm being sarcastic of course, but it's definitely that time of year when family gets together to remind one another of where we come from.  Where we can make the time to appreciate one another and remind each other how much we care.

And of course, then there's Santa and all the wonder and magic He, I mean She, inspires in us all to be gracious givers and even more gracious receivers.  Honestly, it takes a LOT to make just the basics of magic happen at any time of year...and most of all at Christmas.  There are only so many hours in the day for mom's like me to fit in magic making after surviving the office, and daily grind of eat your supper, wipe your butt, wash your hands, and for the last time "PLEASE AND THANK YOU"...er...please and thank you.  Don't you know Santa is watching every single breath you take you little monster.

And this year amounts to no different at our household.  In an effort to better control the budget this year, I got my sewing machine humming in mid summer and vowed that this year, I would make 50% of our Christmas gifts for family and friends.  At the end of the day, I only buy for a couple of our friends, and the rest is family and when all is said and done, I still have 35 people to buy for.  And I'm not the person who gives a small trinket and thinks "cool" we're all done here.  Each gift I give is actually well thought out.  Doesn't mean it's often expensive - I am a thrifty shopper.  But when you have to buy 35 gifts, well, it adds up no matter how cheap you are.

I often wish very much that I were a trinket lover and thrifty-strong enough to say, well folks it's been nice but I'm only buying for the hubby and kid this year.  I just can't.  It's not in my nature.  I've tried, and others have tried, but I'm in such a habit now of starting in January, that by the time December 1st has arrived, I'm ready to decorate, wrap and celebrate.  I honestly don't expect things in return, but I have to admit, I'm probably one of those people you hate at the holidays because they make you feel obligated to reciprocate.  And December is stocked up with celebratory events.  Getting around to see each and every one of the people in our lives that mean the most to us, well, sometimes it's a burden to be so blessed.  Christmas for us literally begins in November when we chip in to help my grandmother decorate, and starts peaking the first weekend in December when visiting begins.  Then it's dance recitals, Christmas concerts, visits with Santa, visits with family, hosting family dinner and my goodness, please let's not forget the wrapping, stashing, hiding and baking...

I'll admit though, I was liking the fact that there was just a bit of extra cash on hand to buy for the hubby and my baby girl this year...that was until our 3 year old started behaving like a mean girl at school, and demonstrated that it was high time she learned what it was like to have less and be a bit kinder in general.  And so we have begun our push to find things of a charitable nature we can do that will help instill in her a strong foundation of humility.  In a real tangible way.

So in an effort to kick start this, we're now going to be adopting a family in our community.  Giving them a Christmas so that my daughter can participate in the shopping and delivering of these things to a centre where our family can then collect them.  It may not make a whole lot of sense to her this year, but this will undoubtedly be the first of many.  We'll also be wedging in time to clean out our closets as a family so she sees that all of us are participating in a donation process and that all of us are working to meet the needs of our community and are being "kind to others".  When they say parenting isn't for the weak or the selfish, they really bloody well mean it.  This was in no way time and effort and money I had budgeted for.  And these efforts really will be wedged in between things that are critical to be done if our magic is going to be kept in tact and as planned.  And while I know the sanctimonious will be happy to remind me that this is truly the joy of parenting and something I should appreciate, I gotta be honest.  I'm already charitable with people who matter the most to me.  I'm respectful and kind and giving to just about anyone, but I'm not a "charity" kind of person either.

And so, the savings I've accrued by hand making so many of our family's gifts to others this year, is now being spent on those who really need it.  And the people who receive my handmade crafts and goodies will know how much I love them because of the effort that was put into them.  And God willing, my child learns by example that it's better to give than receive, to have love and warmth rather than things, and that all people deserve to be treated with decency, dignity and respect.  Crap there's a ton of lessons to be taught - no wonder our parents always sounded so damn preachy.  I feel preachy and I haven't even started for real yet.

Golly, someone better get me a strong soapbox.  I could be here a while.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

30% Awesome

So, I've been bad about posting, and that's probably because I've felt crummy.  I've felt so up and down over the past couple of months, that I'm afraid I'm back on my meds and I don't think I'll ever come off them now.

I struggle daily with feeling like I'm supposed to be sooo much more awesome than I actually have turned out.  Could be that Pinterest is responsible for me feeling so much the failure - there aren't enough hours in the day to learn and make all the things that inspire me on that site - but more than anything I think it comes from the execution or lack thereof of day to day tasks that seem to escape my capabilities.

My 3 year old challenges me at every single step - getting out of the house in the morning's is like trying to change the weather (in other words, it's impossible to leave on time).  Getting her to eat a meal is a never ending fight, and it's only because she's not willing to do as she's asked or expected.  Then she advises that it's "killing her" because well, she's repeating what I'm saying - her snail pace and her stubborness are often what I decry are "killing me".

Then there's work, and it's on one hand something I appreciate whole heartedly.  On the other hand, my ability to climb or move or change things up is extremely limited.  They want someone who can travel.  They want someone who will sing their praises.  They want someone who has already drunk the special koolaid and well, I'm afraid I tossed that cup before it even hit my lips.  And that means rot here and be happy about it, or find something else, and since finding another job is like well, trying to grow a new limb, I'm really trying hard to swallow my pride and rot with a smile on my face.  I'm not sure how long that will appease the powers that be, but it's my only game plan.  And even I know it sucks.

Which leaves me to wonder if I'll ever feel more than say 30% of the awesome I instinctively feel I'm supposed to be?  I'm less than the average person, in twice the average person's body, which brings me to the other thing I fail miserably at - weight management.  Add mood management to that I I feel about as infinitesimally small as a tick.

Which means I don't have a lot of wisdom to espouse at the moment.  I also don't have a lot of time.  I'm failing at all these things because I'm trying to make our Christmas gifts - my list is long, and I'm trying desperately to manage the hits to our pocket book this year by making as many gifts as I can.  I'd say roughly 50% will be handmade goodies and crafts...but all this takes every single spare second, and I started back in August.  I'll be working it right down to the wire.  It's keeping me awake at night.  The lists.  The lists of commitments made, the lists of things left to do, the lists of how I'm failing my kid, my husband...then the worries kick in, and it's about why my daughter does what she does, and am I handling it the best possible way - the answer of course is always no but I'll be damned if I can find something better.  AND then there's the millions of ways I'm failing my husband.  I want so much to make things better with him, and I'll say we're stronger than we have been in our relationship in over a year...but I have no drive, no interest and no time to invest and he suffers from it.

So when in doubt, give in right?  I guess I'll try to find a way to lower the bar of my own expectations and be satisfied with my 30% awesomeness.  Maybe one day, I'll come into my own all by a surprise.  I'll wake up one day and never look back because each and every day won't be the drudgery of same old same old...it will be one more day of freaking fantastic, or as my daughter says "it was a perfect day today"...well, maybe one day in the far off future, I'll feel that way too.

One day.