#thepersonalside: The Weathering Consequence

#thepersonalside: The Weathering Consequence

It is said, when a person writes, it will affect what he or she writes and how well that writing session will be. I am somewhat limited in this capacity but I do not have to be stuck at my desk nonetheless no matter what hour my session is.

I have tried writing on my laptop while sitting on my bed. I can assure you this is not a good way to write. It is unduly hard on the back.

I have thought about writing in the living room–of course, with the laptop–but I am pretty certain I would have the same problem as I did in the bedroom. I have, also, on occasion, thought about writing at the kitchen table. I seem to be stowing away the reasons for this in some dark murky corner of my mind. I have not taken the leap to sit where I have a sliding door to gaze out of, which I expect is highly unusual for me seeing how I want all drapes and curtains open until the moment I head to bed for sleep at night.

Bear with me now, because this does have something to do with the point in question of this post.

When I was a kid, I hated the rainy and snowy days. I would whine and beg to go outside despite the horrid conditions that awaited me. Did I have claustrophobia? Surprising, no. Sometimes, on glorious sunny days, I could be found in my bedroom coloring or writing some story. You might have even found me in the basement doing some craft project. Sometimes my mother would give in, letting me running and skip with the rain drops or snow flakes. Usually, though, she would tell me to find something to do inside. I felt like a prisoner. I would gaze out the window wanting to splash through puddles or make angels in the snow. My bedroom walls would seem to be closing in on me. My only escape was within my mind while reading a book.

April began almost two weeks ago. On schedule, that Monday, April 3rd, I woke up to the sound of rain pitter-pattering outside in the predawn. My thought immediately jumped to the dismay of not being able to go outside. As to be expected, I wanted out. In spite of this discernment, I, also, felt an urgency to write.

In my mind’s eye, I visioned myself sitting at a desk in front of a humongous bay window with the rain pouring down and falling into puddles wherever they landed. I could see myself pounding on the keys, every once in a while, gazing out that window caught up in the oblivion of my story.

Although I did not write anymore that day than I would have any other day, reading it back after the session, I was happier with what I had accomplished. What I was trying to convey was clearer; the flow of words and paragraphs was improved; my choice of words read with more of the understanding I was trying to invoke.

Sometimes a drippy, drizzly, sodden day is what is needed to get the job moving.

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Do stormy days do this for you? Do you fantasize your surroundings to get yourself motivated?

“April is the cruelest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.” ― T.S. Eliot, The Waste Land

 

#thepersonalside: The Serenity Pill

I am appropriating my second post of the month to the hashtag, #thepersonalside. I checked Twitter to see if the hashtag has been used at all. Curiously, it has not, even without ‘the’ at the beginning.

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image by Michael Nutt https://www.flickr.com/photos/nutt/
image by Michael Nutt
https://www.flickr.com/photos/nutt/

The Serenity Pill

General Anxiety Disorder [GAD] is a permanent sideshow in my life, brought on by the stroke I had and intensified by the change of life that growing older brings. Do not get me wrong. I do not mind growing old. The GAD is just a hurdle for me to contend with is all.

My grandparents gave me an affirmative attitude about the later years of life by example. They were grateful for all they had and made light of the disappointments, aggravations, and pain they endured. In addition, none of them seem to be afraid of death. They looked at all of their existences as being part of life.

Anxiety can impoverish that forward-looking attitude to the point where one can only worry about what is coming next, what can befall him/her, the unknown, and even aspects that are trivial. It can do it without the person being aware, causing dreadful tension, atrocious headaches, and sometimes nausea. That is General Anxiety Disorder.

Some people have trouble functioning at all when this disorder hits. I am sure my husband might have liked it better, although not by much if I had reacted by hiding out in the bedroom not participating in life. With me, irritation, oversensitivity, and provocation set into my head. I was not a happy person and I was making my husband’s life wretched. Why did he stay with me? I cannot figure out why. He told me he knew something was wrong and we just had to find a way to deal with it. My opinion is he is a soul who is always duty-bound and I am grateful for this.

The doctor prescribed one antidepressant after another when I finally decided I needed more that just dairy products to keep me calm. I had gotten to the point where I did not like the taste of milk anymore. The thought of having the same reaction to ice cream was appalling to me. Whenever I feel the need for an attitude pick-me-up or want to give myself a special treat, I head over to Dairy Queen for a small Blizzard. There was not any way I wanted to give that up.

Eventually, the doctor found the medication that I, now, call my Serenity Pill. Lexapro is in the category of antidepressants but is used more for anxiety than most of the other ones. It acts on the brain chemicals serotonin and norephinephrine[1] to balance what is out of whack. It allows me to feel sad, anger, annoyance, and even minor depression but without that feeling of forebodingness that cause my mood to be so desperate.

Lexapro is not a cure-all. I still worry about those things I don’t have control over but it is in perspective now. These things are not haunting me daily anymore. Only when I read something, see something, or hear something pertaining to these matters, I will worry. I adjust my thinking using cognitive techniques[2] to put myself in that calm frame of mind again.

Brain injuries, such as the stroke, can play havoc with emotions. I can only be thankful that I live in a time when there are medications to help me deal with this adversity.

[1] Treating Generalized Anxiety

[2] Stress Management – Ways to Relieve Stress

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“Anxiety is love’s greatest killer. It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you with his panic.” ― Anaïs Nin