Monday, October 23, 2006

Slipping, slipping


I feel it happening again.

The weather starts turning cool. Leaves turn brilliant shades of orange, red and yellow. I walk outside in the morning to find frost glimmering like diamonds on every surface. I feel abundantly joyful and bask in the beauty of autumn.

Then it starts. A general achiness, a weariness that tears through my body. Every cell feels heavier. It's harder to breathe, harder to move.

I begin to feel overwhelmed by the pace of my life. I feel inadequate. I get angry more often. My feelings get hurt by things I'd usually think nothing of.

Soon, I stop wanting to see people. Or talk to people. I feel like I want to wrap myself in a warm blanket in a corner and only invite my closest friends and family in to see me.

My house gets a bit dirtier than usual. The vacuuming that I used to avoid for only a day or two now might be avoided for weeks. I don't like the idea of visitors. Even if my house were immaculate, I kind of wish that most people would just keep away for a little while. Let me be quiet and crawl within and just rest for a few months.

I'm usually not consciously aware as most of these things happen. It's such a slow process. Even so, after a decade of this, you'd think I'd catch on more quickly.

But I don't.

Then, there will be an evening that makes it clear to me. Dusk will be settling over the world. The sun will start going down. And I'll start to feel a bit jittery, uncomfortable. Anxious. Over the next few days these nightly bouts of anxiety will grow. And one night I'll be almost ready to collapse in panic at the setting of the sun. More! More! My body needs more! The sun can't go down yet. I can't handle the darkness. I just can't do it.

And this is when I realize that it's here once again.

Seasonal Affective Disorder


I've dealt with seasonal depression since my senior year of high school. But, somehow it still surprises me every year.

Maybe it's because every year I hope it won't happen. Which is probably a good thing. I'd hate to waste a lovely autumn in anticipation and dread.

Some years it has been truly deep, dangerous depression. Some years I'd just call it a bit of a funk.

Who knows what this year will bring.

But I was really hoping this would be the year I'd get off. I'm happily pregnant. I've been staying well-nourished. I've been exercising and getting out in the sun more.

No such luck.

I'll probably pull out my friend, the Blue Wave GoLight, and start to put him to good use.

I'll probably take a hot bath today and drink a great big mug of hot cocoa.

What's bothering me the most about this right now is a general feeling that maybe I'm not what's wrong. Maybe I've been okay all along.

After all, my body's rhythm, my emotions, my mind are all telling me exactly what I need to be comfortable right now. I need to sleep a bit later. I need emotional space, but I also need a great deal of love and attention from those who put me at ease. I need to just take things a bit slower than usual.

I keep thinking that, if I were just able to do that, to follow the signals my body gives me, that this time of year wouldn't be so hard.

But, my body's signals and my life's demands are terribly off-kilter. My body needs rest. My life demands that I drive kids to school and make Halloween costumes and help at my children's school and get ready for the holidays and make Christmas cards and make dinner every night and spend time with extended family and go visiting teaching and prepare lessons for Sunday, and, and, and, and.

Maybe there's really never been anything wrong with me so much as a complete and inescapable set of demands that keeps me each year from simply doing what I need to do to take care of me.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Music I'm Loving Right Now

I'm afraid this is not going to be a full-fledged iMix list.

I just had to share my favorite recent song.

New Shoes by Paolo Nutini

HURRY over to iTunes, as it's their free download of the week until Tuesday, I think.

This is one of the most fun, peppy songs I've heard in a long time. It just makes me smile.

And who can't love a tall, dark, handsome Italian guy named Paolo. Especially when he sings like this.

Go check it out and enjoy!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Free Hugs!

I love this. I'm not sure I'd be up to it now, but I can totally see myself doing this in my younger days.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Recent Kid Funnies


As we were getting into the car after leaving Kaitybean and Scud's school I said, "Let's go shopping. Mommy needs some new pants."

He looked up at me and said, "Why did you pee in them or something?"

Then, tonight as I was cleaning up after dinner he said, "Everything I wish, I dream. Like, I wished that your bum would fall off. But that was just my dream."


We were helping our neighbors move out a few nights ago when JDub and I stopped at the gate for a stolen moment and a kiss.

Then, behind me I heard Kaitybean clearing her throat.

"I'm sorry to interrupt the love mood," she said, "but I've got a really big wagon here."


We learned a little bit more about Scud's eating habits the other day. This kid can really put food away.

After three and a half large portions of lasagna last week, he asked for more.

"Scud, I think you're full," I told him.

"But I don't hurt yet," he replied.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


That's me breathing a HUGE sigh of relief. Honestly. It feels like there are all kinds of tiny springs and wires unwinding all over my body. Tension is just melting away.

I finished teaching my last childbirth class today. And it was a lovely experience. And I still love what I do. And I certainly don't regret teaching it or attending the 24 hour birth I attended last week.



I finally feel free to fully and selfishly prepare for my own birth instead of spending so much of my time and energy devoted to helping other women prepare for theirs. And it feels good.

On another note, I took a rather spectacular fall yesterday. My foot hurts like crazy. I'm bruised all over my left side. I think I'll spend the rest of the day in bed. :)

Friday, October 13, 2006

My Little Phineas

I've finally come up with a good explanation for Mashuga. Not that this kid (or any child, really) is thoroughly definable. Mashuga especially (and the fact that he has survived a full three and a half years) defies explanation. But, I still think I've come up with a pretty good archetype for him.

I've just begun re-reading one of my favorite books, A Separate Peace by John Knowles. The words he uses to define one of the main characters really describes Mashuga well.

"...simple, shocking self-acceptance."

"Phineas didn't really dislike West Point in particular or authority in general, but just considered authority the necessary evil against which happiness was acheived by reaction, the backboard which returned all the insults he threw at it."

"...Finny pressed his advantage. Not because he wanted to be forgiven...he might rather have enjoyed the punishment if it was done in some novel and unknown way....The Master was slipping from his official position, and it was just possible, if Phineas pressed hard enough, that there might be a flow of unregulated friendliness between them, and such flows were one of Finny's reasons for living."

"Everything he said was true and sincere. Finny always said what he happened to be thinking, and if this stunned people then he was surprised."

"[He was]unique, able to get away with anything at all. And not because he was a conniver, either; I was sure of that. He got away with everything because of the extraordinary kind of person he was."

And last of all, a good description of how we feel about him as parents:

"The Devon faculty had never before experienced a student who combined a calm ignorance of the rules with a winning urge to be good, who seemed to love the school truly and deeply, and never more than when he was breaking the regulations, a model boy who was most comfortable in the truant's corner. The faculty threw up its hands over Phineas..."

Honestly, what else can you do with a kid like this? I already feel this way about Mashuga and he's only three. At once he is exasperating and enchanting. He wants very much to be good, but at the same time has such a calm disregard for authority and rules. The next fifteen to twenty years ought to be breathtaking. In many ways.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

My Current State of Mind

So, this is how I've been feeling about pretty much everything lately. I guess it shouldn't be a surprise that my blog, which is pretty low on the priority scale, is not seeing much action.

I'll post sometime soon. Hopefully I'll still have readers by then. I love you all for coming over here every once in a while. Hope you'll forgive my apathy and laziness lately.