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Blue Monday

This morning was bad. For various, and unfortunately ongoing, reasons, I was having a rough time of it. I was in a foul mood, with wave upon wave of angry and sad thoughts breaking over me. At first, I tried hard to fight it. I tried to remind myself to breathe and look on the brighter side of things…to remind myself that it’s futile to rage against what cannot be changed, at least for now. But all my attempts at positivity failed me. My own self-pep-talking was only pissing me off more.

So I gave in. I made a conscious decision to just let myself be as upset and miserable as I dared to be, not censoring my thoughts and letting the negative thoughts run wild.

This lasted for a couple hours. At the same time, I worked out some of my aggression and pent-up energy by baking a loaf of bread and preparing dinner for tonight. It helped somewhat to have a giant knife in my hand and chop away at things. 😛 Kidding. Sorta. And then I took lots and lots of pictures of my loaf of bread:


Incidentally, this was a new version of my Walnut and Raisin Irish Soda Bread I was trying out, and although I was happy with the flavour, I didn’t like the texture as much, so more tweaking is needed before I post the recipe. But that didn’t stop me from obsessively taking about a zillion pictures of it…



Anyways, after a couple hours or so, I started feeling better. And by the time I left for work, I was pretty calm. I don’t know what the experts would say about my way of dealing with things this morning, and I have a suspicion it wasn’t the healthiest way I could have handled it. But it worked for me, at least for today. I feel that sometimes, you just gotta let it out, let yourself really feel your emotions…have a good long cry, scream, take out your frustration on some unsuspecting yams, whatever. Then it passes through your system instead of getting all bottled up inside; your mind and body is then ready to refocus and redirect. At least that’s what works for me sometimes. But I don’t really know what I’m talking about.

It seemed like quite the coincidence when I later read that today was dubbed “Blue Monday” by a British psychologist. It’s apparently statistically the most depressing day of the year. Who knew? So there you go, that’s why I had a bad morning! 🙂

But I was already feeling loads lighter and happier by the time I read that. One of my students had cancelled at the last minute, so I took myself to the nearest Starbucks where I sat with my favourite Chai Latte and read a newspaper. (And it was in that newspaper that I learned about “Blue Monday”.) It was a lovely half hour.

And then while working, I was reminded that life cannot possibly be all that bad as long as we have a few good laughs in it. I have a student recital planned for a couple weeks from now, and my students are all busy preparing for it. One of the things I’ve asked them all to do is write me a story about the piece they’re performing, and this story will be read out at the recital before each performer goes up to play. And oh my, the creativity, imagination, and hilarity of their stories are simply too delicious!!

I’ll share one of the ones I got today:

From Madeleine, age 10, playing “Sleeping Dragon” by Nancy Telfer…(this piece starts slowly and softly, building into a frenzied and loud middle section, then subsides again into the same soft and slow part with which it began)… (I’m going to type it exactly as she wrote it, including all spelling and grammar)

The dragon is sleeping, he just fell asleep!

The dragon is dreaming, dreaming about a mouse that would make a very nice diner.

But, all of the sudden, the mouse has a growing potion, the mouse is now twice as big as the dragon. Oh no, the mouse is about to eat the dragon. But all of the sudden the potion wears off. the mouse is now normale size again. the dragon see’s the mouse and grabe’s it. Now the dragon will have a nice diner. The dragon now returns sleeping peacefuly, and snoring

the End

Goodness, I love my job! 🙂

And Joe’s in town this week! Yay!! Things are lookin’ up! Here’s to hopin’ that Blue Monday will give way to Tickled Pink Tuesday… 🙂


Posted by on January 18, 2011 in Thoughts

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Maru and Meditation

Have y’all met Maru?

I could watch him all day. Methinks I need a Maru in my life.

Caitlin over at Healthy Tipping Point wrote a great post about healthy coping skills. I have definitely had my share of unhealthy coping skills for life’s stresses over the years. I tend to mope and comfort myself with food.

So I’ve been working on developing more useful, productive, and healthy ways to deal with stress. One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to meditate for at least 5 minutes everyday. It’s only been a week, but so far, it’s been going pretty well. One thing I’ve noticed is that concentrating on deep breathing for just 5 minutes a day has made me more aware of my breathing during the rest of the day. It’s like my body and my brain have suddenly been exposed to more oxygen, and so they notice it more when they don’t get as much during other activities. I’ve noticed that I breathe more shallowly when I’m on the computer or watching TV, for example. And on the other hand, I’ve noticed that I breathe more regularly and deeply when I’m at the piano. So I’ve been trying to decrease my computer time and increasing my piano time. Which will be good for me in all respects.

And wouldn’t petting a cat be a wonderful way of relaxing and relieving stress? I don’t have a cat, and I will not likely have a cat anytime in the near future, so watching YouTube videos of Maru (and other adorable pets) will have to suffice for now. But seriously, how could the stress not just melt away when you watch the adorable antics of these animals? I just can’t help but laugh and squeal with delight, and as soon as that happens, my body is able to relax a bit. During the traumatic last couple of years of my dad’s life when he was battling cancer, I took so much comfort in watching cute pet videos on the internet, and would regularly send links of them to my parents, who also got some much needed laughs from them.

I wish I had discovered Maru at the time! Seriously the funniest cat ever! And what is it with him and boxes?? It’s just too cute and bizarre and awesome.


Posted by on January 9, 2011 in Thoughts

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