Peering through the gloom

2011 has started quite grumpily for me with a nasty bout of fluey-buggey thing that has me in bed for 4/5 days and playing catch up with my energy levels ever since.

I am struggling to maintain a sunny disposition, which I normally pride myself on, and the weather isn’t helping.  It is all about finding moments of pleasure for me at the moment to push away the sense of impending and melodramatic doom that coughing, spluttering and exhaustion tends to bring.  Despite the gloom, moments of pleasure are pretty plentiful if I look for them.  They don’t always last long, but they are definitely there.

Clothes – for any one who read my post on getting dressed a couple of months back, this will not be a surprise.  I am wearing my brightest and cosiest jumpers.  The colours remind me I am alive, often elicit compliments from others (a lovely bright red, chunky wrap around jumper got me a compliment last Thursday) and the jumpers give me something to huddle into when my colleagues fail to read my emails for the umpteenth time …

Music – Music is definitely my drug.  When I need a moment I put on my mp3 player and stare out the nearest window.  I am still listening to my December playlist from an earlier blog post.  Today I resdicovered The Wombats ‘A Guide to Love, Loss and Desperation’ which I love for its noisey, fast paced, angst-soaked and frankly celebratory feel – particularly ‘Let’s Dance to Joy Division‘.  I am also listening to Pulp ‘His ‘n’ Hers’, a new acquisition which takes me back to being 15, sulkily thrown on my bed railing against the injustices of my teenage existence.  If ever there was a sobering and galvinising thought, it is remembering how self absorbed I was back then.

Fresh air – Getting in to the outside and soaking up every last bit of light as well as getting some exercise is a Good Thing.  I went for my first post Christmas run the other evening and though it was cold and dark the endorphin rush and the sense of achievement made my evening.  I wandered along the seafront earlier today trying to avoid getting soaked by the waves and feeling the wind whipping my hair around my face.  It was exhilarating and blissful, enough said.

Friends – I have met up with two friends for coffee in the last two days and catching up with them has been the high point of each day.  Not so very long ago I didn’t have any one to call on for a chat and a cup of tea and now I am always overdue for this with someone and I swear by it as a must for learning and functioning in the world.  By some amazing act of grace they seem to benefit from our catch ups as much as I do.  Wonders will never cease.

Kind thoughts – Another friend sent me a card to say thank you for their Christmas pressie, which I recieved on my first day back at work after the break.  Such a lovely thought and such a pretty card (colourful little birds with gold embellishments).  The thought taken over something just for me like this means so much and it reminds me that a little effort can bring a lot of joy, which is incredibly heartening.

Spontaneity – I try and do at least one thing just because I desire it in the spur of the moment, each day.  Today I approached a busker in the centre of Brighton (apparently collecting money for School fees but I am not sure if I believe that) and asked if he would sing ‘New York, New York’ for me if I made a donation.  I ummed and aahed a bit before asking as I felt pretty shy about it, but I am glad I did.  I enjoyed the song and felt good about plucking up the courage to ask the guy and hopefully offering him some encouragement.

I suppose the moral of this blog entry is that I am trying to grow up and stop feeing hard done by when life isn’t everything I want it to be.  I am trying to find strategies to help me seek the positives and to be a better human being, one who isn’t unpleasant to be around even when she is feeling a bit fed up.  If any one reading this has any tips they would like to share for how they deal with the more gloomy days I would be grateful to hear them. Onwards, ever onwards!

The west pier

… Do you remember the first time?/I can’t remember a worse time/ but you know we’ve changed so much since then/oh yeah we’ve grown … (Pulp, Do You Remember the First Time?)