I'm in one of those moods. (Oh no. You may want to reconsider reading this post. ha) There are probably several influences contributing to my dreariness of spirit, but the biggest is this yucky weather we've had all year, combined with the lack of outside "happy place" time. When the stresses of normal life pile up and I haven't had the chance to release it through exercise and the simple pleasure of nature, my mind starts to spiral and my emotions quickly follow. Soon depression and my basic "crazy bitchy lady" persona takes over. That crazy lady was present through most of the late winter, but thankfully, she has taken a break over the last few weeks. Tonight, however, she is peaking out of the hole I stuck her in.
We live in a pretty troubled neighborhood. To top it off, the city as a whole is struggling. We've lived here 12 years and have loved it for most of that time. My greatest source of stress, in regards to my location, has been the house next door to us. Different renters have occupied the large 100 year old home the entire time we've been here. In the last several years, there have been a parade of good decent people living there (at least until the landlord does something, or fails to do something, and chases them away.)
However.... we ... have... new.... neighbors!
Because I really desire this site to be a positive happy place (thus the name), I won't go into detail about the numerous ways they are DRIVING ME CRAZY! But what amazes me the most is their lack of decent, respectful, and adult-like behavior. I get so frustrated because deep down I want to like them. I want to see them love their new house and flourish among the great people who populate our neighborhood. Why can't they cooperate and just be normal?
Anyway.... Moving on... I hate feeling depressed. I've gone through 4 full blown depressions in my life. (The latest being this last winter.) As a result of those miserable experiences, I have learned how to reel myself back in, fight the battle raging in my mind, and surrender to God my will and heart while allowing Him to strengthen me. I honestly believe that learning to identify the triggers and counter those lies with truth is an extremely important skill that every person needs to learn, even if medication is necessary in the fight against depression. Winning the war combating our sanity is crucial for our overall health and happiness. So, tonight I find myself battling.
I could feel the darkness creeping up on me as soon as I returned home from dropping my husband off at the airport for his typical work travels. The weather was cold and dreary. The house was dim, littered with backpack and school papers, and loud with activity and excitement for the coming weekend. AND... the neighbor was being their same unneighborly self. My stomach immediately started turning, my appetite left, my nerves flared and I wanted to just hide out in my room. NO! I will not spend my Friday miserable. But it won't just go away. How do I make this yuck go away? Fight, Linda, fight.
Actually, writing this post has helped a lot. It feels good to be expressive and creative. But before I had the chance to sit and focus on my computer, I had to get a few things in order. So... I left my room. I pulled the kids together and told them my plans for dinner. I needed to create a simple step by step program for the evening so I didn't get stuck in the muck. I got my kids fed. We pick up the house a little. I helped them pick out a movie, since it is Friday Movie Night. A calm came over the house and I started typing. Peace started returning.
I have gone through this enough to know that sanity won't return in a snap of the fingers. Tomorrow may be a better day. Most likely, by Monday, when my husband returns, he will have his normal wife back and not the "crazy bitchy lady" persona. Even though I would not put this episode on level with the big ones I've gone through, the skills in combating it are the same.... find the trigger, methodically work through countering those triggers with good and truth, reset your perspective and trust that hope will return soon.
So, for now, I will focus on how great my life really is. I love my kids. My husband is the biggest blessing in my life. God will be victorious in the end. And I have some really, really, great BBC videos to watch alone in my bed tonight while eating a special dark chocolate candy bar. Ah... now that's what I need.