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Decompression

Song Lyric of the Day:

This is the time to give you a reason / This is the time to bare our soul / This is the time to tell you the real truth

Unloved / “This Is the Time

If you read what I posted yesterday, then you can safely and correctly assume I’ve been very stressed of late. Things are a bit calmer now as I am down to only talk therapy, having wrapped up physical therapy a few weeks ago. But for a while there it was, ironically, a lot of driving to deal with the physical and emotional/anxiety issues I developed after our car accident. I’d have to leave work at least a half hour ahead of my physical therapy appointments to get there on time. I’d have to leave work at least 15-20 minutes ahead of my talk therapy appointments to get there on time. Then I’d have to drive back to work or home to get back to work; having a “portable” job I could remote in to was a sanity-saver more times than I could count. I’d also work at night sometimes after the kids were in bed to make up for time I missed during the day. All these appointments and extra drive time resulted in a lot of short lunches at my desk. Which, if you know me at all, was hitting me where it hurt as lunchtime is a sacred time for me. I either go to lunch with a few of my close work friends or I take a book with me for a solo lunch. Not being able to do that and have that time to socialize and/or decompress just ended up further contributing to my overall anxiety.

So how did I manage to not go batpoop* insane? Mostly by cleaning and organizing. Cleaning and organizing are my go-tos when I’m stressed out; I imagine my therapist would say it’s because that way I’m restoring order and controlling what I can. (See? Therapy works!) I went on a lot of benders around the house, whipping this or that into shape and tackling various projects. I printed and framed more photos for our hall gallery wall. I organized cabinets. I whipped my home office desk into shape. I tackled the kids’ closet; it’s still not done, but it’s better. I would do such deep cleans in the kitchen it’s a wonder the counters aren’t translucent now. The areas where I was happiest with my results were either the kitchen or the living room, my family’s main hangouts, because Sebastian is a tiny, fast wrecking ball who leaves his toys EVERYWHERE.

Living Room Toy Area
The tidied living room lasts approximately 3 minutes once Sebastian hits it.

Days I ate lunch at my desk, I made sure to read even just a few pages of my book. I would try to take short walks with my work wife. At home at night, I would stretch out on the couch after tucking the kids in bed, let Buster settle in my lap, and binge-watch shows. I highly recommend Dark and The Chalet on Netflix; they’re both pretty dark, violent shows, but if you’re looking for happy, Hallmark-y show recommendations, well, you’re barking up the wrong tree. (I also just started The Frozen Dead, another dark French show.)

I’ve also tried to get back into writing and blogging. There’s something really cathartic about just letting it all out, whether here on the interwebs or just something I wrote for myself on my laptop. (I miss having nice handwriting. Working on a computer has ruined it.) I’m also trying to post more photos on Instagram since it lets me indulge my love of photography on the go. I’m hoping to dust off my DSLR soon and take Coraline on a mommy-daughter photo walk; she’s developing a love of photography and I want to encourage and grow that.

Now that things are finally slowing down a little, I’m just trying to take things one day at a time. Even a few minutes of decompressing is good for my soul and even better for my overall mental health. Getting back to the things I love most, like writing and photography, can only help with that.

*I’m trying to curse less because I have a 20-month-old parrot and an impressionable almost-8-year-old who reads well.

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