Friday, June 7, 2013

Depression 911

Yesterday was an awesome day.  Terrific in every way.  Husband left for work happy.  I hung out laundry happy.  The kids played with friends in the tent happy.  I sang all day.  But after dinner every thing fell apart.  I mis-handled some stress and wound up throwing an awesome and terrific fit.  And it short circuited an emotional fuse somewhere.  So, today I am burnt out, done, deflated and depressed.

 I know from painful experience that this can grow into a major, debilitating depression.  I don't want that.  So, I am going to have to fight.

Thankfully, I know that this can be successfully done.  That gives me hope.  And hope is the first requirement to beating this.

Next, call for help.  Call on God, call on my husband, call on my friends.  In that order.  I need back up and reinforcements.  And the sooner people know I need prayer the better.

Put on my uniform.  Some days I feel so good, I can blitz through the day in greasy hair and rags and still feel like a princess.  This is not one of those days.  I donned my "power suit" consisting of capris, kick-butt tennis shoes, a sassy brown t-shirt with lace and pearl accents, make-up, earthy jewelry and an up-do.

Fuel my inner champion.  I need to make sure I take my vitamins, eat lots of fruits and veggies, drink my water and eschew sugar in all forms.  Sugar free chocolate milk counts as a major food group and possibly a narcotic.

Guilt busters.  The last thing I need is to feel guilty about what I should be doing and don't feel like doing.  So I will set my timer for  10 minutes and address various issues that have the potential to drag me down.  I don't have to be Super Woman and vanquish the house.  Just spending 10 minutes here and there will keep me from drowning in a morass of guilt and despair.

A little mood music.  Instead of talk radio, turn on some music.  I like to set my CD player to shuffle.  I get a good mix of dance, reflective, hymns, musicals, opera and silly kids songs.  Before long, I'm singing...

Don't escape, retreat.  There is nothing wrong with strategic retreats throughout the day.  This is a battle, girl!  Hiding won't get you the Medal of Honor, but neither will falling on your Sword of Martyrdom.  For me this means it's okay to reward myself with a book, sugar-free candy, internet surfing and just going AWOL (behind a tree) as long as there are limits and I use the opportunity to draw fresh strength and courage.  Here's a few hints: make sure the activity (or lack thereof) is refreshing.  30 minutes in bed is vivifying, 2 hours will only make me feel sore and guilty.  15 minutes on the computer can make a difference, if you are reading some thing uplifting.  There are many blogs that can give you a fresh perspective.  Avoid complainers, though.  Keep the bad news at bay.  I really enjoy Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck.  But on a day like this their shows become forms of escape.  I will become engrossed and neglect every thing else.  Same with books.  The Hunger Games became a weird form of escape for me.  At least Katniss was having a worse day than I was! haha!!  I did not come out of that bubble world easily or for the better.  Reading has to be an encouraging and re-focusing reward, not an escape.

Have a heart!  Find something within your current capability to express love and service towards someone else.  It only takes 5 minutes to read a picture book to your child, 10 to play trains or legos, 15 to play a simple board game or take a walk around the block, 2 minutes to point out a weird beetle, 1 to whisper a sweet nothing, 4 to make a special cup of tea for a spouse.  Don't bite off more than you can chew.  But do something to let someone else know they are loved.

So, time for me leave my retreat and get back into the heat of the battle.  We'll see how I'm doing tomorrow.