Sunday, October 19, 2008

Beating the Blues

The wedding is over, and the verdict is in. The bride was gorgeous, and everyone in attendance had a fantastic time. So, why do I feel like crap?
It's not like I hoped it'd be a disaster in my absence. Quite the contrary. That everything went off without a hitch was the best news I could've heard. But there's something about hearing it from other people instead of witnessing it myself that has sent me into a bit of a downward spiral today. Yesterday, I felt a little miserable, but also like it wasn't the end of the world. I was at least able to focus on my most shallow losses. Today, the real disappointment of having no wedding memories to speak of has kicked in, and I just plain feel blue.
Some people really revel in feeling depressed. They make sure everyone around them knows it, don't get out of their pajamas all day and cry into their ice cream bowls while watching old episodes of The Waltons. This doesn't do it for me. When I feel gloomy, I want out. NOW. And, while I'm still trying to find the one cure-all for feeling bummed, I have come across a few helpful strategies.

1. Eating. Yeah, yeah, I know how dangerous this one is. For people with food addictions, this is likely to just make depression worse, so it's not for everyone. But there's something about indulging in anything from a piece of chocolate, to a fast food burger, to a fatty 9-course meal that dulls the pain a little. While I'm not a stranger to the flabby middle, I find a little comfort eating (followed by a lot of restraint and a re-introduction to my good friend, the treadmill) can go a long way towards beating the blues.
2. Shopping. Again, a potential serious hazard, but a new sweater (or, in cases as grim as mine, a Cuttlebug) can afford someone steeped in misery enough temporary relief to just get them through the funk. However, this must never be tried if you're prone to unmanageable credit card debt or have a spouse who nags you right back into Drearytown about the finances.
3. Crafting. Alright, not for everyone. But for me, making cards or knitting or beading is just plain fun, so I can't feel lousy while I'm doing it. Plus it's productive, so it's like I'm getting something done. I know, I know. Tell it to the Captain when he arrives home after a long day to find the breakfast dishes still in the sink, the laundry still piled up and half a dozen pretty new cards on display. If you're not a crafter, substitute something like playing an instrument or amusing yourself with your toy trains.
4. Exercise. No, I do not mean the aforementioned treadmill. Perish the thought. I'm talking about things like going ice (or roller) skating, getting out to the garden and doing a little digging and pulling, taking a hike in the woods, or riding a bike. I mean the kind of exercise that will get you the fresh air and raised heartbeat that's good for you, without the misery of actually focussing on the good-for-you part.

Since there's no guarantee any of these things will pull me out of the dumps, I'm open to other suggestions. But for now, I figure I'll start with a little online shopping and then move into the other 3 tactics that work for me, bringing my monkey-kids along for the ride. If nothing else, we'll have a little fun together and make a few memories of our own.

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