Poem: Find Your Joy

Find your joy
On the darkest days
When the days are short
And the nights are long

When it feels like
All you can do
Is wrong
Find your joy

I look to family
Soft, puppy nose
Colors of winter
I find my joy

In warmth like love
All wrapped up
Happiness is
My babe, the pup

Laughter in the kitchen
Favorite tv shows
Days off of work
When it snows

I find my joy
Shopping online
Sipping tea in the bookstore
On days I feel fine

In walks after work
With the dog and his toys
Long chats on the phone
These littlest of joys

Are bright tokens
of happiness
All stored away
I find my joy

On these darkest of days

Poem Rerun: SAD, and A Little Pep-talk

This one is a re-run, a poem I wrote last year in December, but definitely fits tonight! It’s sooo cold here. 7 degrees when I woke up this morning, thank you, and I could live without it. In fact, I think I would live better without it. The cold wears me down, dries out my skin and makes me eat more. (Although, the holidays haven’t helped the waistline, either.)

For those of you who are struggling with SAD like me, hang in there. The longer days are coming. Get plenty of sleep, drink TONS of water, and quit eating crap that’s not good for you. (Really this is just a reminder to myself.) And remember to take care of yourself, especially on days when you’re really down. You’re not going to get anything done if you’re in a funk. And it’s much harder to get out of one, once you’re already there. Don’t do it to yourself. Just don’t. Oh yeah, the poem. (Psst. Write more! Especially when you’re feeling down. It does help!)

SAD РSeasonal Affective Disorder 

Age twenty-nine

Feels like ninety-two

Tired and achy

Like I’ve got the flu

One step forward

Two steps back

With joints that ache

And bones that crack

With blurry eyes

And pounding head

“I want to sleep!”

“Sleep when you’re dead!”

Reminder to Myself: I Have Nothing to Be Unhappy About

You may have heard me mention Seasonal Depression now and then. Well, it’s fast approaching winter, and that means less concentration for me, general tiredness and the start of the blues.

img_20161010_161640718.jpgBut I am constantly having to remind myself:

I really don’t have anything to genuinely be unhappy about. So, even though I may be feeling down, other than SAD being the reason, I HAVE NOTHING TO BE UNHAPPY ABOUT.

I have, 1. Friends and family that love me.

This is obvious. I get together with them occasionally. Like today, going to hang out with the girlies!

2. A boyfriend that loves me.

He actually seems kind of grumpy today, but I think that is because he has to work and I have the day off.

3. A job that I like and people who I like working with.

I really do enjoy working with the people I am with right now. Even though the job is only temporary, they have been so welcoming and it has truly been a good experience for me.

img_20161010_162027428.jpg4. I live in a great location.

Our new place is a mile a way from parks in any direction. We have access to great restaurants, book stores (which is a good thing for me) and a farmer’s market.

5. There is a lake a mile down the road.

We live near a lake. I love living near water. Although colder in the winter, I’m sure, there is something relaxing about hearing the water and seeing the waves rolling into the shoreline.

6. We have all our basic needs covered.

I have a place to live, food to eat and clothes…the last one which I bought more of this weekend. I may not have a lot of money. But we have enough to live healthily.

7. I have a car.

I have a vehicle to get where I need to be. And even though my car sometimes needs care all on its own, it is something for now and I am thankful for that.

8. I have my writing.

I have more time to write now that I am working lesser hours. And I use poetry to express my thoughts, especially when something is troubling me. This is a therapy all on its own.

And when I am writing…I truly feel like the self I am supposed to be. I felt lost those years I didn’t write very much.

9. I have my health.

Well, I am healthy in my own right. SAD and acid reflux not really life-threatening issues. Oh, but heartburn really is a pain in the ass, isn’t?

10. I have my sanity.

This one is up for debate some of the time…but mostly I like to maintain that I keep a somewhat decent head on these shoulders. I have my smarts, what limited common sense I’ve retained, and I have my creativeness.

I like to think that the last one is the most important. Because if I can’t create, if I can’t create something beautiful out of nothing…then what is the point of living at all? We all hope to find a little bit of life’s magic somewhere.

I think we should all strive to be our best creative self, don’t you?

What do you guys think?

Happy writing!

 

Saturday Morning Cartoons and the Winter Blues

It’s cold in our apartment this morning and its become that time where we can’t decide if it’s quite cold enough to remove the AC’s from the windows. (I think so!)

I woke up this morning, (and bundled up!) and got myself a cup of tea and brunch…and now I am settled in a blanket in front of the TV watching cartoons. (I found Phineas and Ferb on Netflix, tehehe).

S'Winter_SnowboardingThe point is: it is raining and chilly outside and I am completely content with being a bum and snuggling under the blankets. I think I might start reading a book, too.

This hibernation of mine this morning, reminds me of the last couple of days, which have been kind of rough for me. It has been terribly gloomy and rainy outside.

I get terrible seasonal depression, or Seasonal Affective Disorder, (SAD). For those of who don’t know what that is, read the definition here.

Basically it is what it sounds like it is. I get depression based on the seasons. Usually its based on how light it is outside…in the winter months the days are shorter and it does something to my brain…I don’t get all the happy chemicals I need and I spiral into an emotion imbalance…I change.

It’s very frustrating. Its like I lose half of myself each year. I morph from Summer Amanda into Winter Amanda and I don’t like losing myself each year to that other person.

(I know I definitely need to move south or something,) but right now I live in New York and this is who I am.

100_1392Summer Amanda likes to be creative, likes the sunshine, likes to try new things.0126131346Winter Amanda has a hard time concentrating, she’s super tired all the time and she wakes up more and more with a feeling of hopelessness deep in her chest.

The tiredness, I can deal with…but the depression….it makes it very difficult to wake up each and every morning.

Some days are better than others. This feeling of hopelessness also leads to self-doubt, which in turn leads to anxiety. It’s a never-ending cycle and sometimes it is exhausting.

I am very blessed to have friends and family in my life that get why on some days I just want to stay inside where its safe, though. I just want to be surrounded by love and comfort and warmth, and enjoy a nice night where I’m not self-doubting myself, where I felt content and safe and loved.

Not everyday is like that, though.

I am lucky, though; the shorter days will soon be over, and come late December, the days will start getting longer. It’s just these fall into winter months where I struggle the most.

So, I’m going to sit back, listen to music and enjoy my tea, and some light box therapy, and not feel guilty that I am being completely unsocial while doing so.

The people who are important to me in my life get it, and that’s enough for me.

Happy Saturday Everyone!