Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Gimme shelter

This is one of those times when the ordinary functions of life, the mundane processes we repeat to get from one day to the next, seem burdensome and unmanageable. I don't know why.

Maybe it's the weather. With the outside temperature changing from 84 degrees one day to 38 degrees the next, I can't seem to set my thermostat correctly to make my home comfortable. Wardrobe decisions are equally iffy, so I shiver or sweat at any given moment.

Or maybe it's all the little decisions nagging at me right now. My prescriptions are on the last refill, which means I need to make a doctor's appointment, which I didn't want to do until after I signed up for Medicare, which I've postponed because I haven't been in the mood to sift through the various plans and make choices. I'm be-whiched.

It could be the three extra trips to Baton Rouge this week, trips that used to take twenty minutes and now (post-Katrina) can take twice that long at the wrong time of the day. The trips I made took place, of course, at exactly the wrong time of the day -- either before work or after -- replacing precious stop-and-smell-the-roses hours with take-care-of-business time.

It may be the holiday season. It lost a big chunk of its appeal for me when my children grew up, and now that my grandchildren are either grown or practically so, I no longer see the magic of Christmas through their eyes. Now, unfortunately, it's just another deadline.

The main thing, I think, is that it's just so easy for us introverts to run out of emotional "gas" when we don't take the necessary quiet time to reflect and "refuel." Lately I've been too distracted to notice and appreciate the little things that normally nourish me: The brightest star in the night sky. The movement of light and shadow as the sun goes down. Brown leaves dancing in the air in front of my car as I drive the curvy river road. Hundreds of identical acorns in the driveway and one funny, bald-headed one, its empty cap lying right beside it. The leaning tree beyond our back fence and the few clusters of green leaves engaged in some sort of endurance contest on its otherwise bare branches.

I'll make it through the end of the work week, because making it is what I do, and then I'll crawl inside my shell and stay there until I can come out again with my head on straight and my rose-colored glasses balanced perfectly on the tip of my nose. I hope you'll wait for me.


  1. or the shortened daylight hours, or that Christmas comes racing in after Thanksgiving and then what...

    Hugs to you, I think this feeling is endemic at this time of year.

  2. I know exactly what you mean by running out of emotional gas. Hope you get a fill-up soon!

  3. The Acorns! There seem to be so many this year. I've been stomping on them at the park because I love the crunch. I too understand the need to pause and re-fuel. I'm dragging getting going this morning because the quiet and solitude of my house is where I want to be, not the drive to or interacting at the office. And the two Christmas parties I will be attending tonight. Yawn, I can't wait to return to my bed tonight!

  4. I know EXACTLY what you every single sentence! Sometimes its just too over-whelming and you can't deal with it all. Just give me a good book and a comfy couch....

  5. Oh Velvet, I've been feeling the same. And you summed it up so beautifully. Of course, we'll wait for you!

    Here's hoping you find a little time for you this week!

  6. I hope the sun shines down your way...and you can find time to sit and bask in it! You will be renewed. Sometimes saddness covers me like a dirty old blanket and I can not get from under it!

  7. we can understand how you feel, without our Jm and our friends on the web Christmas would be very lonely, so we send you some some warm, safe hugs and yes we will gladly wait for you to reappear!

    peace and blessings


  8. I think a great way to re-fuel is to go back and read your own heart warming posts about your childhood. Take a trip back to the wonder of childhood. It is sure to make you feel cozy. Enjoy your shell this weekend ;)

  9. I am so with you on this one! I am completely burned out by Christmas orders and well meaning friends are inviting me on adventures, when all I want to do is sit quietly by myself...Carmon

  10. Thank you, dear readers, for your comments and your empathy. I guess misery (too strong a word, actually) really does love company, because I began to feel perkier as soon as your comments began coming in and I realized I wasn't the only one in a blue funk for no good reason.

    It occurred to me in the past couple of days that having an occasional bout of melancholia isn't new to me. What's new in recent years is the mental process of trying to figure out what's going on to make me feel that way.

    Back in the years when I was married, if I felt sad for no ascertainable reason, I didn't explore it. I just assumed it was somehow my husband's fault and got on with my life. ;-)


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