Yes, I’m talking about you.
We all had a sad day today. At least the few people I talked to. And since four people is a relational sample to the rest of the earth’s population, this is apt. We were sad.
Let us collectively stick out our lower lip and make a solid frowny-face. That is actually fun so don’t do it too much as it takes the darkness out of depression. Stay in the shadows for a little big longer, please. I need you at your worst so I don’t feel alone.
Waking up today I saw that it was raining. While I normally ride my bike to work and burn a few hundred calories, it just wasn’t possible today. The dog and I loaded up and took to the subway. I think throwing off any of my normal routine is upsetting to my system. Also, hard exercise on the way to work and getting all sweaty is a nice release of stress and tension. It’s just plain exhausting and some of the awesome neurotransmitters start firing out pleasure. Great way to feel good without two fingers of Scotch, although that works great, too.
The sun not being around does something funky. I know tons of people suffer from S.A.D. but I wouldn’t be surprised if it affected all of us a little in a depressive way.
So, no exercise, no sun. Oh, and I didn’t bring an umbrella, because umbrellas take all the fun out of the rain. I wear a suit and everything, but I’m not willing to give up getting wet. So even though the rain was nice, the humidity just made everything heavy, hot, and dark.
The day itself was fine, but when I got home I just fell headfirst into sadness and fear. For years I studied self-improvement that taught you how to quickly climb out of these spaces. But for me, I never allowed myself to climb in. Sadness, depression, fear, anger, shame – all natural and normal human experiences. In fact, my inability to sit in these dark places without running away caused most of my issues today.
It’s weird for me to write a post without humor, but that’s where I’m at right now. It will be gone by tomorrow I’m sure.
What I’ve learned about sadness is that I need to courageously push into it to come out the other side. My inclination is to distract pain with television, food, or online activity. I’m afraid to go in to the pain because it might just be too awful in there. That’s where it helps to have friends who can pull you out if you get lost. But I’ve found that by going in I usually come out of it very quickly and the pain subsides.
It’s weird to have sadness when you have a pretty good life. Nothing tragic happened today, and I am grateful for a lot of reasons. But I feel sad. And scared. I can own it.
Tomorrow – seventeen new dick jokes! (I’ve written fourteen so far.)