It's my party and I'll cry if I want to...

Poor Auntie M.

She asked me yesterday how I was doing -- twice.

The first time I treated the question according to our cultural script, in which it is not to be taken as a genuine inquiry about the state of one's life, but as a formulaic greeting expecting an equally formulaic response.

The second time I told her the truth.

And the truth was that I was in the midst of a full-on grand mal birthday anticipation emotional meltdown, which I had been keeping bottled up inside for a couple of days.

Turns out, letting the cork out of the bottle was probably about the best thing I could have done for myself, since spilling my guts about the myriad things that were bothering me broke me out of the spiraling depression over a handful of big deals and million very small deals that were compounding in my spinning mind to create a dystopian fantasy of the whole cosmos being out to get me.

But it wasn't terribly comfortable for my dear family to listen to.

Turns out, too, that my distress actually had very little to do with my birthday (although there are some issues there, too -- and not just about getting older -- but I'll save those for my therapist).

Chiefly, I'm grieving for a dear friend whose father died this week, and frustrated with the impotence of distance to offer comfort.

Some of my other stressors also had important issues at their core, but were amenable to some straight-forward cognitive behavioral therapy techniques to defang the distracting emotional distress surrounding them. And with those things set in perspective, the little things (a defunct coffeemaker, an erroneous library fine, etc.) resumed their proper weight as minor irritations rather than pieces of a dire cosmic conspiracy.

So. I'm much happier about my birthday now, thank you very much.

Also, I've found that a new pair of very comfortable socks can do wonders to enhance one's outlook on life.

2 comments:

Athena said...

I thought I was the sole target in the crosshairs of the cosmos lately. I wish I had known the Universe was crapping on you too. Perhaps we might have helped one another escape sooner.

The Muser (aka Beautiful Mama) said...

Sorry you were in a funk. :( But glad you're feeling better!

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