I had a plan last night to attempt to try to deal a bit with my current doldrums. I’m sure that it’s a combination of my usual sort-of seasonal depression (starts most years around the time I realize it’s nearly Ray’s birthday and running until about the anniversary of his death), the shock-dismay-disappointment of the election, the other unrelated uncertainties (our landlady has sold the building and we may have to move when our lease is up), and my frustration with the projects I’m trying to finish during NaNoWriMo.
The plan was an old standby that has helped many a time before: pick one of the movies in our collection that I know will make me cry a few times, snuggle up under a blanket and watch it. It’s amazing how having a really good cry helps getting me back on something approaching an even keel.
So that was the plan. I left the office and began the walk home. I drilled down in the vast collection of playlists on my phone to find one I hadn’t listened to in a while. It started with Beyoncé’s “Halo” and jumps around in genres after that. I picked it primarily because I hadn’t listened to it in long enough that I didn’t remember what all was in it, to be honest. I didn’t expect that when the Al Green version of “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?” came up that I’d start crying while I was trying to walk home.
So there I was, walking along, bawling my eyes out at least half of the walk home. It didn’t feel as cathartic as the good cry over a movie by any means. So I was still planning to do the movie thing when I got home.
But I got there and my husband was pulling beef ribs out of the oven that he had cooked until they were falling apart. And while I ate I was scrolling through the database of our movies we’ve got ready for streaming, and chatting a little bit online with a couple of my NaNoWriMo buddies and I just couldn’t pick a movie. And I was feeling exhausted.
So I curled up on the recliner and took a nap. I was afraid it was going to be one of those depression naps: where I sleep until the wee hours of the morning and wake up, not feeling any less depressed, but too awake to sleep and knowing that I wouldn’t feel rested when it was time to get up for work because I would stay up the rest of the night unable to sleep.
What actually happened is I slept for just over an hour. I felt like writing when I woke up, so I did. And by the time midnight rolled around, I’d written a bit over 1800 more words on my novels, and had some confidence that maybe I had sorted out the plot things. My husband was in bed asleep by then, so I put things away, turned out lights, and went to bed.
I don’t feel much better this morning but I feel less worn out and unmotivated. I thought I had about a half hour I could spend writing a blog post about where I was at, maybe talk about the plotting issues or something, but first I did a quick check of social media, where someone was sharing this from Schreibblockade offiziell, a blog by Lenia Roth:Which says the writing stuff I was mulling over more succinctly. Plus I haven’t recommended another blog in a while, so I can take three or four birds with one stone which is even better than the usually proverbial rock tossing, right?
So, go check out the cool cartoons, commentary, and other stuff on Schreibblockade offiziell, and let’s all try to have a better day.
(And I still may pull out one of the tear-jerker movie some night this week.)
I’ve been called both a hopeless romantic and a hopeless optimist.
Neither is true. I’m ever hopeful, not hopeless.
Which is not to say that I’ve never been dejected or depressed, never felt defeated, never feared that I was doomed to failure. I have felt all of those things. Throughout my teens and well into my twenties I periodically had depressive periods.
I’m not saying that I merely felt sad. I had more than a slight understanding of the clinical definition of depression…