"Yesterday was great. Today, was just ok. But sometimes accepting 'OK' can make it that much better."
I could feel it from the moment I woke up. The irritation creeping in. The totally irrational impatience. The "I don't give a snot, just leave me alone" reactions. The uncontrollable urge to spend the day in bed.
Yes, I can feel the fluctuating surge of hormones approaching like a mother-of-all tsunami.
I know my impatience is totally unfounded, my outbursts completely uncalled for. I had been looking forward to spending a four-day weekend with my kids, and a totally unscheduled Saturday with my husband. Suddenly, however, I wanted very little to do with either of those concepts. I wanted to sleep away my totally made-up sorrows and drown myself in guilt-racking doses of double-fudge.
But I also knew that none of those things would make it any better.
In fact, as I take on a woe-as-me, I'll-never-live-up, I-don't-even-care-to-try-anymore-so-why-bother attitude, the resulting downward spiral becomes a never-ending cycle of regret and self-loathing.
Doesn't anxiety/depression rock?
I get out my notebook at 6pm. The one I'd been diligently jotting in both morning and night for the last week. At the top of each page is my focus for the day (still blank from having skipped it this morning). The rest of the page will be filled in with things that went well and things I could have done better. I set my sights on filling out the "Focus" portion.
"Try not to kill anyone," I consider writing.
I take a step back for a moment and sigh. Throughout the day today, as I've had to control lashing out at everyone from my kids to the cashier who accidentally gave my bag of sugar to the customer in front of me, I have repeated the same thing to myself over and over again. "You are ok, Misty," I say in an almost babyish, condescending kind of way. "There is nothing wrong, you are very blessed, and there is nothing for you to be upset about. You are going to be ok."
I am going to be ok.
And I think of all the people, either directly or indirectly, who have helped remind me of that fact today.
So instead I write, "Count your blessings. Remember that there are people who love you and want to see you succeed. You cannot control how you feel, but you can control how you react to those feelings."
You. Have. A. Choice.
And that's when I realize that not only can I control how I react, but I can control the situations that I know might trigger those reactions. I could spend the day in bed, then feel unproductive and worthless for doing so. I could consume mass quantities of chocolate, then kick myself for loosing a star sticker on my healthy-challenge chart. I could yell at my kids for playing too loudly and elevating my migraine, then decide some people are just not cut out for motherhood--with my name at the top of that list.
I could accept the fact that I need the extra rest, and stay in bed watching all the uplifting videos my awesome friends have shared in their Facebook feeds (such as the one that reminded me this morning of the importance of reading the Book of Mormon when "mens hearts fail them"--exactly what I needed to hear). I could let go of that star sticker for just one day, and indulge in game-night treats with friends (some of which were picked out just for me). I could pop a few ibuprofen, slip on the darkest sunglasses I own, and take my kids to the park (where they can run and laugh and play to their hearts content).
I smile and fill the rest of the page with the "what went well" section of my journal entry, choosing to focus only on what was good about today rather than filling in all the "what I could have done betters."
Because in the end, I can choose to beat myself into a depression comma.
Or, just for today, I can be ok with just ok.
Why I Left the Church
The Importance of Friendship
Secrets to Staying Sane
Fighting the Rain