Ho Ho Ho No

I’ve been on a bit of a roll posting-wise so let’s keep this going! And in keeping with the downer theme of the week, here we go:

  • In addition to not feeling great physically (although considerably better than earlier this week) and a little fragile psychologically, I’ve noticed I’m slightly more sensitive, too. I cried during a WalMart commercial of all things; Ed thinks my heart might finally be growing three sizes after years of atrophy but I suspect a brain tumor.
  • As a semi-pro shopper who relishes gifting lovely things to those around her I am straight-up out of ideas this year for Christmas presents. I mean, things have been purchased. Nice things! But I feel like I’m basically just running errands for people as opposed to delighting them with something fun or whimsical or thoughtful. I don’t like to just buy stuff for the sake of buying stuff or I’d be set, so this is posing a bit of a dilemma. All the usual gift list ideas are either repeats or just not that inspiring. Any help here is appreciated.
  • I’m trying to temper my expectations of holiday cheer and fun with our families this year. Every year I turn into Clark Griswold, all high on Christmas spirit (OK, eggnog) and invariably am let down because no one appreciates the effort and can even pretend to have fun. There’s pouting and guilt trips and lots of “I guess that would be OK” and that’s from the people over 60, not the teenagers. I’m also already exhausted by the whirlwind of travel and activity involved in dealing with all four sets separately this year. While I don’t miss living in Chico, I do miss being able to round up at least three quarters of the troops in one convenient location so I could be treated horribly in the comfort of my own home.
  • I’m really impressed that the manicure I got last week has lasted so well. Legit Christmas miracle happening over here, kids.
  • Being sick meant I laid off the coffee for a few days and now when I try to drink it I don’t care for it. What is going on? I’m really curious to see if my decades-long love affair with coffee is coming to an end.

Alrighty, let’s see if I can gather up the energy to wrap some gifts, maybe try to order a few more gifts, and get myself out of this funk.



What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

A cold medicine-induced post about anxiety. Here we go!

In addition to sneezing my head off and coughing so hard that I vomit, I’m currently in the middle of a little…anxiety spiral? I guess? An “episode” feels a little bit much, but I don’t know what to call this. As you can imagine, this is incredibly convenient during the holidays when you’re expected to be social or juggle multiple commitments or handle crowds. It’s a real chicken-egg situation: I can’t tell if it rears its ugly head because the holidays require precise management of expectations and schedules or if having to deal with four sets of parents and friends short-circuits my brain, but here we are. It sucks. I feel completely useless and to anyone who hasn’t experienced this it just seems like I’m scattered and cranky and lazy. I spend a lot of my time saying, “I forgot” and “I’m sorry” and all of my organizational skills and coping mechanisms are shot to hell. It takes a lot of concentration to make a to do list, which helps settle my mind and calm me down a bit. It also chills out the part of my brain that’s telling me that unloading the dishwasher is such an insurmountable task.

I see people on social media post pictures of folded laundry or list off chores they finished and quip, “I’m adulting!” and I always bristle. First of all, “adult” as a verb is annoying as hell and we need to cool it. Second, for a decent chunk of the population, it IS hard to get three things finished in a day because leaving the house or making a call is a challenge. Maybe not every day all the time, but it’s there. I get that it’s meant to be a light-hearted, self-deprecating thing, but on the days when I’m having trouble calling my mom back because I know I can’t fake being happy and so she’ll worry so then I put off calling her back even longer but then that makes her worry even more. It’s tiring at best and at worst damaging to my relationships.

The hardest part of this is trying to explain it to people without freaking them out or pushing them away. (I’m sure writing a blog post about it is a great way to avoid that!) It’s the ultimate It’s not you, it’s me and it feels so hollow and lame. I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by people who don’t give up on me, but at some point it’s going to be tiresome, right? There are people starving in this world and I can’t keep my act together? I have so much to be grateful for – and I am – but it’s hard to break the cycle of negative talk. So I lean on the good people around me a little more and hope that I can repay the favor when I’m doing better.

But At Least I Haven’t Consulted WebMD Yet

I am on Day 4 (OK, maybe Day 5 now that I think about when the initial ickiness kicked in) of a cold and I do not care for this. I’m exhausted and achy and can’t breathe and I don’t want to point fingers but this is totally Ed’s fault. He was sick week before last and despite all my shrieking to “WASH YOUR HANDS!” and “DON’T TOUCH ME!” and “YOU’RE SLEEPING IN THE OTHER ROOM, RIGHT?” I still managed to get this death virus. So I Married Patient Zero. Also, every person on my side of the office has been sick so that may have contributed.

Anyway, this is the first time I’ve been sick in awhile (woo!) but it really drives home how awful of a person I am when I’m mildly inconvenienced. Any dramatic tendencies are only heightened by the NyQuil. Does the Red Cross know how I suffer? I wonder why no one is planning a telethon to raise funds to fight whatever I’m bravely battling. “I can’t even remember what it’s like to be healthy” I wail as Ed fetches me another glass of juice and offers to bring me more blankets and deals with me insisting on watching Gilmore Girls all day since I find the music and clothing soothing. Did I mention I threatened to smother him in his sleep if his coughing kept me up at night? A fucking delight over here, I tell you.

I did get a flu shot this year, however, so I’m hoping this will be the extent of how sick I get. For Ed’s sake (and anyone else who has to be around me) let’s hope that’s true.