Do you ever have one of those days when you just want to bury yourself in bed, or better yet, get up and run away from it all? When the smallest of things feel so complicated that you can’t think straight? And yet, you really have no reason to run away and the things that feel so complicated are really simple first world irritations or inconveniences.
I seem to be experiencing my share of those days the last while (one which involved backing into the side of my daughter Paige’s car…so much for running away!!). The only comment my husband and son made was “Didn’t the back-up beepers go off”?……. “Well sure they did – but it was too late by then”!!
Yet in the big scheme of life, I (like a lot of us in this stage) have little reason to feel this way. Of course it’s different when dealing with life altering experiences or crises. But this is about just feeling crappy for no reason at all. I am learning this can be “normal” during hormone fluctuations – when emotions and not-so-clear thinking can get the best of us.
So how do we move through those days? I wish I knew! We tend to beat ourselves up with “pull it together, there are other people in this world who have it far worse”. Yes, all true and we do need to be conscious to create context at times. However, we also have to allow ourselves to feel what we need to feel, and not put the usual “guilt” on ourselves (that we’re so good at) or make ourselves push the feeling away. We have to allow ourselves the freedom and space to find our own realistic coping mechanisms.
Sometimes getting through those days is as simple as putting out an SOS to a close friend (as a handful of my close girlfriends can attest to receiving), ensuring we are also ready to return those calls when friends are in need. Hearing a voice on the other end of the phone can be all the “calm” we need. Just knowing we have someone to call that is part of our “tribe” and who “gets it”. We need our sisterhood in good times and in struggle – it can be the best medicine and our safety zone. I also find a cup of herbal tea, some time to quiet my mind through meditation, a motivational book, a walk, cardio workout, or even a productive few hours working from home in my “sweats” can also help me get through an off day.
Just last week, I experienced a number of frustrations (all related to schedule inconveniences) where I wasn’t able to solve the situation as I normally do. Instead, I felt like “the sky was falling” (yes, hormone timing may have had something to do with it). I happened to be texting with a girlfriend at that moment and shared the frustration, and her text back went like this:
“You cannot change what is out of your control, so the best thing you can do is take the positives from the situation. You are healthy, you are free, you live a good life. Remember there are so many people in the world who would give anything to have our worst days. I remind myself of this often. Go grab a tea, be kind to yourself, take some quiet time and enjoy what is left of the day”.
That was all I needed to hear at that moment. I completed the task at hand to the best I could (given the situation), went for a run and re-focused. There was some really good that came out of that frustrating day that involved time with special people in my life – and for that, I was grateful.
I am getting better at listening to my body, more than I ever used to. It’s a life long journey and part of my daily meditation on trying to be present. I may never achieve an “A” in this area – but I am content with a “participation ribbon”! I’m happy to know I am working on it.
So give yourself permission to feel what you feel: call an SOS moment with a girlfriend or take some quiet time to work through it – and find the moments of humour or joy in it. Why? Because we can… AND we know it will pass! xo
Photos: Michael 🙂
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