I can’t get out of bed…

lately I've been feeling this way

I started to go back to a therapist recently. There are a lot of issues plaguing me these days.  The committee in my head is screaming loudly, forming their conferences without my permission.

I’ve been unemployed for a little while.  At first I was delighted.  I was going to use the down time to conquer some projects that I had put off.  I actually enjoyed being home and found plenty of things to do.  Collecting unemployment has been greatly helpful; it makes me feel like I am still earning a living on my own and gives me a little of my own money.  All of this was fine and dandy until one month turned into another, which turned into another. I would have phone interviews and an occasional face to face interview.  I continued to look for work plowing through all the sites.  I have quite the collection now of job seeking accounts which I monitor on a regular basis. I felt interviews went well and were pretty damn positive.  But who the heck knows what goes on inside the minds of HR people and managers.  It’s a smorgasbord of  principles-these people looking to hire other people.  I have had sooooo many interviews over the past ten years!  I’ve lost count.  I’m a professional interviewee.  Sheesh!

Once the holidays had past in 2011 and I was approaching another birthday, I began to get depressed.  Along with the unemployment, we were now about 5 months into Dave’s disease.  I was doing some serious reflecting.  Lots of “what ifs” conversations between me and the committee.  Many discussions about “loser mentality” occurred without my permission.  My relationship with my girls had changed. I was faltering due to my recent bad choices of coping. With disappointment in their hearts and judgments passed upon me that I had no control over, I found myself desperately alone  and didn’t know how to reach out for help.   Isolation has been the method of choice when I find myself deeply scared and alone.

Do you know that one time, long ago, I tried to form a progressive, inspiring anonymous group called “ISOLATORS  ANONYMOUS” but no one showed up!?      (that’s an old joke but always a good one)

FEAR is a muthafucka!
It can choke the life out of anyone.  It is a direct result of lacking faith. Lately I have been frightened of a lot of things.

FAITH is the essence and crime-fighter of FEAR.  Sometimes I have solid, immovable  faith especially when it pertains to someone else issues.  For me?  Not always so much.

I have the tools of coping with life.  I learned them many years ago when I was active in 12-Step programs.  Obviously I need to go back and take a refresher course.

I’m going to share some great ideas that were given to me by my therapist Christie.  She is a God-send to me.  Sadly I will be losing her in April as she and her hubs are moving to Topeka.  She’ll recommend someone else for me but it’s just the thought of “starting over” with all my MUCK that has me not very excited.  Ah but I digress…

Here are the wonderful tips…and all of them are very do-able:

WAYS TO ELEVATE MOOD by Christie Peterson

  • EXERCISE

Well this is a no-brainer and requires no explanation.  I mean it’s endorphins sistah!  Good for ya, necessary and a given. Come on!

  • 5-MINUTE RULE

This is a simple task that helps me get motivated to do something.  I confess that lately the simplest things like cleaning the house, EXERCISING, cooking, gardening, grocery shopping, things like this are basically not done.  I find myself completely uninspired to do any of it.  It’s pathetic.  How the 5-Minute Rule works is this:  Let’s say that I have a pile of dishes in the sink and around the countertops just screaming to get done.  I walk past them two, maybe three times a day and sigh.  I don’t want to do them.  Logically I know I they have to be cleaned up, but I have neither the desire or the will to do them, so I don’t.  If I allow myself a window of 5 minutes to simply begin the task; ONLY 5 minutes; and then I can tell myself that after 5 minutes, if I don’t feel like I want to continue or complete the task, than I give myself permission to quit and go back and lay down.  Sounds silly doesn’t it?  But think about it.  If you begin to walk and say to yourself “I’m only gonna walk for 5 minutes, and you begin to loosen up, feel the stride in your legs, notice the warmth emanating through your body, things will begin to happen.  The endorphins will kick in.  You’ll begin to feel lighter and happier that you have made this choice to walk today.  It’s a trick, I know.  But it just might work.

  • YOGA TO DECREASE ANXIETY

I’m not a yoga expert, but I do know that when Dave and I did our yoga stretches every morning, we both felt more flexible.  It helped our backs and probably our minds.

  • DO A GRATITUDE JOURNAL

Oh this one is a goody.   Learned this when I was involved in the “programs”.  Rather than doing a full out, long journal; Journal every night-writing down three things that were positive or made you appreciative in your life that day.

  • TALK TO A FRIEND

This I don’t do often enough.  Recently I have been reaching out to friends.  They just don’t know that it’s a life-saving line for me to simply converse with them lately.

  • VOLUNTEER

I remember the impact that volunteering had on my mental well-being.  I haven’t done this since last year.  I will make an effort at this, but feel that it will probably be low on my priorities while I focus on Dave.

  • VISIT WITH A PASTOR WEEKLY

Again, this is something that I’ll have to work on.  And it doesn’t have to be a pastor, but rather can be a strong spiritual leader that you look up to.

  • ASK DAUGHTERS FOR SUPPORT

In my case, this is essential.  I have to be very specific in what I ask of them and not place unattainable expectations upon them.  After all, I’m still a parent and have lived a whole lot more of life than they have.  My desires have to be contained within the realm of what they are capable of.  Christie told me that studies have indicated that the brain is not fully developed until at least the age of 25.  I found that very interesting, especially when I still get shocked over some of the ideas or the way the girls think about some things.  It explains so much and now I can understand a little more where they are coming from.

  • WALKING IN NATURE (with daughter(s))

I use to work out with Sarah at the Y.  I really enjoyed that.  I’ve tried to get Keely to do the same with me, but to no avail.  Katy would likely be my best work out buddy if she were closer.

  • JOURNAL

Hence,…the blog.

  • SUPPORT GROUP

I think I’m going to need to start going to some cancer or spousal support groups like Victory in the Valley.  I looked up the times and locales but again….NOT MOTIVATED.

  • DO SOMETHING EVERYDAY THAT MAKES YOU HAPPY

I didn’t realize how hard this one is until I had to think about what exactly makes me happy?  I’ll get back to you on this one.

  • HUMOR

I think I still have the ability to laugh or smile.  Watching silly movies or comedies; reading ridiculously funny things on the web…laughing at Chano…all these things help.

  • MEDITATION & PRAYER

Nan Myoho Renge Kyo is the current chant that I do often in the tub!  It is the central chant and practice of all  forms of  Nichiren Buddahism, the natural development of joy, increased vitality, courage, wisdom and compassion.
Recently I was introduced via FB friends to Ek Ong Kar Sat Nam Siri Wahe Guru which I am exploring currently.  This requires great focus and breathing which forces you to take time out to not only do this properly but reserve that time for yourself as well. It is said to be powerful and energizing when done correctly.
The Serenity prayer is always my “GO TO” prayer which I say probably ten or more times a day: “God, grant me the Serenity to accept the things that I cannot Change, the Courage to Change the things that I Can, and the Wisdom to know the difference.”  I also pray the Step Three prayer and my own written Step Seven prayer.  And of course all the free flowing prayers and intercessions of prayer and positive thoughts that I offer to my God on a daily basis.

  • GET 7 TO 8 HOURS OF SLEEP PER NIGHT

Well folks, this is a hard one.  I can’t remember the last time I got a full, uninterrupted nights sleep.  But again I’m working on it.  I actually believe that last night I slept six hours straight through.  It was amazing!

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