Monday, April 13, 2009

Mr. Calico Love

April ... sigh

April was going to be "my month" - Hey ! look out April I warned 'cause here I come ! - I had lists a mile long of to-dos of let's-dos and want to-dos. Madam Invincible is arriving any day now (I thought) and she's stayin' for awhile. Today is April 13th and it's beginning to sink in that perhaps I was wrong, I made a mistake, I got my months mixed up. April has thus far been the opposite of my month. April has been a struggle ... to say the least.

I battle with sadness. I had hoped that maybe my recent super duper blood work would confirm that it was caused by or exaggerated by some physical thing - my hormones perhaps or maybe a thyroid condition - quite common to women of my age. But no, it turns out that (physically) I'm exceptionally healthy (for which I am truly grateful and surprisingly relieved). All this other stuff ... well, I guess it's just me, it's just who I am. It's in my head. It's not the kind of sadness that a pill will help I've been down that road as well. It's something that I have to change in myself, something I have to fix. It's my secret illness. The one you don't tell anyone about, because everyone sees you as that So Together Girl. Look at her - shes' so strong, she's so independent, she's so talented ... I've been fooling everyone for a very long time and I feel like a fraud pretending to be all of those things. I've been playing this role of Madam Invincible for as long as I can remember ... I'm very good at it and I rarely let my guard down. That girl knows my secret and she holds it close for me and you know it too - because I keep few secrets here.

When this sadness falls over me I feel tired, all I really want to do is lie in the nest of down and flannel surrounded by books, much loved pets and my rich imaginary life tucked in beside me. Chocolate & tea and much more sleep than this girl needs. My crazy big dreams and hopes all fall by the wayside, their details become fuzzy and vague. Productivity grinds practically to a halt which begins the terrible Vicious Circle of feeling angry and disappointed in myself. My thinking becomes trapped in the same well worn groove and I begin to feel stuck, resigned ... hopeless.

And then it passes ... again. I get a break from the stormy weather and I gather my boot straps and I pull as hard as I might. That's what today is all about. Let's see if I can't turn this big ship around one more time. 'Cause ...

Hey ! there are 17 days left in April.

his favourite spot and most handsome pose


  1. I'm sure the advent of sunshine and warmer temps will help. Also....vitamin D... none of us get as much as we should. It plays a HUGE part in moods as well as many other processes. My doc wants me to take 1000 and I have noticed that I have felt better since doing so. Just a thought...

  2. I have days when I battle with sadness, too. I think it started when I was a child and saw all those sad Disney movies where animals are hurt. (I will not go to a Disney movie now).
    Thank goodness you are physically healthy... that gives you a lot to work with. It's important to have someone with whom to share your secrets, so thank goodness for "that girl" and for your furry gang. There are days when Madam Invincible visits me too, I just wish she could move in on a full-time basis.

  3. Thanks Judy ! and Alice Merci ! for the hints - I have recently begun taking 800mgs of Vitamin D plus I do try to walk with Missy D with my face in the sunshine as often as possible.

  4. Right there with you on this. It won't get near enough attention until there are way more female doctors our age suffering the same symptoms. It sucks BUT I don't think it's rooted inside your head. I just think our heads recognize but cannot easily discern the problem.

    How do you feel about a visit to Florida?

  5. Susan, I am fighting this same battle. I know how frustrating it can be. I love that woof drawing too.

  6. I think you've pressed a button for many of us, and we all have our ways of trying to cope with it. For me, sunshine, quiet, and remembering that "This too will pass" gets me through the bleak days. And yes, it does pass. I hope it will for you, quickly.

  7. Churchill used to call this feeling his "black dog". Between you and me, I do think all those with artistic temperaments experience some form of the black dog from time to time. Don't automatically dismiss antidepressants. Sometimes the brain needs a reboot, and these are known to help. But chocolate and sleep are known remedies as well!

  8. ohh, I laughed right out loud seeing sweet Oliver sitting there with his squinty eyes... saying woof from under the lovely red fur.... what a guy!

    hey Susan... keep hauling on the bootstraps... it's the only way. Lots of us have been paddling like mad under the water for year...fooling everybody we know. Just like poor floundering little ducks we are... or like the clown everybody expects us to be even though some days we are crying on the inside .. ....

  9. It is a tiresome battle that's for sure and such a drag that one feels the need to be so secretive about these feelings - I do think "that" makes it all much worse - all that shame. Thank you for all the kind & understanding comments it feels much better to know that I'm not at alone in feeling this way. I do hesitate, some early mornings,about revealing so much about myself. About being so honest but whenever I do it seems by the end of that day I can always count on a lovely trail of kindness here in the comment section and that makes me feel glad that I don't have to keep my secrets here. Merci my friends.

    Big Shamu is Blog Summit 2010 happenin' in Florida ? can Missy D come ? I would love to visit Florida and especially if I were able to use my preferred method of travel. A twinkle, twinkle (a la BeWitched) of my nose and I am instantly there. Did you hear the twinkle, twinkle sound ? Wink.

  10. i am glad to read there is nothing physically wrong. i think there is sort of an anxiety/depression zeitgeist right now....and it manifests in malaise. i know that feeling of every action is so hard like slogging through taffy. i think pamela terry hit on something: artistic sensibilities are very vulnerable to that vibe i was talking about..it is the age of anxiety as it looks like everything in the world is shifting from a known quantity to an unknown way to proceed. at least, thats my take. its like a giant cosmic paradigm shift. if you go to florida for a blogger summit with shamu i want to go.

    anybody interested in baby sitting a brood of chicks and a rhodesian ridgeback mix?

  11. Cross your fingers girls, I'll find out Wednesday.

  12. Hi Susan. Oliver looks so regal sitting there meditating on your desk. What a great pal.

    One step at a time, hang in there. We are all your support team, here to catch you if you need.

    "Gimme an 'S', gimmie a 'U'...

    Well I never was a cheerleader (we dont have highschool cheerleading teams here) but trust me, there is a team of us out there working on a cheer just for you.

  13. Thank you for your sweet honesty! I hope your sad cloud lifts. Until then, I agree there is nothing quite as comforting as chocolate, flannel, down and furry friends.

  14. sweet Susan...I can soooo relate to this post of yours today. (sigh). I keep telling myself that there is so much out there for me to discover yet. And that I CAN do this "new life" thing. You are an inspiration to me. You really are.

  15. Susan, the "Woof" drawing is just spectacular! Jake's sweet spirit embodied in little Oliver! Now THAT is a true COMPANION ANIMAL!!!

    You are brave and RIGHT to write about your battle on your blog. Many of us out here know where you come from. We are praying that you will have brighter days ahead and very, very soon.

    Hugs & Love,


  16. For my sisters sadness..it was a physical thing...a chemical imbalance and it took trying several anti-depressants until they found the right combination and then the sadness lifts and stays lifted....life changing for so many! you help us by telling about your life and even the sad days are an inspiration.

  17. oh,....and i know you will not feel shame any more like you said after you have made all these friends on your blog feel like they are NOT ALONE!!!ANY MORE!!!that is worth a lot. GOOD FOR YOU!!!!!

  18. You are doing the right thing in talking to us through your blog, Susan, because we're you're friends as much as if we lived just down the street from you. I have realized this year how important and beneficial these blog friends are to me. How the comments of love and support can lift me so when I'm down.

    I've suggested anti depressants before, and I know you say you've been there, tried that; but I might gently suggest considering a try once again and giving it the time to try different ones to see if there is a right one for you. These little miracles gave me a life back many, many years ago and today, I still require them. And most of the time I'm a happy, semi productive woman. It IS a chemical imbalanced in the brain for me and perhaps the same for you?

  19. susan, i too have had lengths of sadness and darkness that felt hard to overcome. when it got very bad last fall my dr. put me on citalopram to help my body retain more seratonin. it has helped tremendously. my hubbie calls me a drug pusher because i'm very vocal about telling other women to give it a try. if i had a vitamin c deficiency i'd take extra vitamins. apparently, i have low seratonin and this drug is a god send.

    take care of you and hold on for the sunshine and warmth heading your way a little closer every day!

  20. I must confess I;m a bit of a naturalist when it comes to checmials and drigs--i avoid them--well, other than caffeine!

    I know too well those moments of sadness and I too strike people as so with it and engaged as I am honestly quite funny so it covers up stuff.

    Sleep, excercise adn eating well ALL help tremendously adn sun of course. Also, I do feel a vital relationship with God where you know your life has purpose makes a huge diff but even so i need those above things.

  21. some one here said we creative types suffer from 'black dog' now and then...how true! I have black dog days/times too...

    don't dismiss the antidepressants too quickly.


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