Oh the Weather Outside is Frightful, and so is Mommy’s Disposition! (Dealing with the blues during deployment)

If you know me, you know that I am a pretty natural person. So when it comes to feeling down, or dealing with the winter blues, I try to take a natural approach. Whenever you read about “beating the blues” there are certain things that always come up: take a vitamin D supplement, as well as vitamin B, omegas, drink lots of water, exercise, and get natural sunlight. Check, check, check, I do all of the above. Well, not so much on the sunlight right now with this weather; I more than slightly resemble the Cullens’ less glamorous, non-sparkly fourth cousin twice removed. I have a best friend who is studying to be a naturopath, so whenever I need a boost, I call her. Ignatia pellets? Done. Bach’s Rescue Remedy (flowers)? Sure. You name it, I’ve probably tried it. And you should know that they all work most of the time. But there are weeks where it seems like nothing helps. That’s when you’ve got to dig deep.

I know not everyone is exactly the same as I am, so I like to open these blog topics up to my personal facebook friends. Here are some of the responses we got:

Getting on Kayak and planning my Spring Break vacation.  Then I put it on my calendar and start the countdown! This is a great idea! In December I was missing my husband quite a bit more than usual, so I decided to plan our post-deployment trip. Now that only one of us is working full-time, and we have a child, it won’t be a trip to Italy, but Disneyworld is a close second! I spent weeks researching the best resorts, restaurants, vacation packages, etc. My husband even joined in on the research fun and ultimately picked the resort we’ll be staying at. It was a great way to pass time, and gave us new, exciting things to talk about.

Make a new goal. then figure out how to accomplish it and set a deadline! and the obvious, feel bad for myself and mope around. then kick myself in the butt and do the first. I would LOVE to be a “goals” person. I want to be! I look up virtual dream boards, read motivating quotes, etc, but I have yet to sit down and write out my own goals. I think that will be my next goal (ha!).

Some good movies always help for me: love actually, you’ve got mail…to name a few. And an afternoon solo at a coffee shop or bookstore (or both!) with no agenda and a journal or sketchbook is medicine to my soul. Ahh movies, journaling, and coffee shops. This was a comment from a friend who is on the same page as me. BC (before child), I would hit up a yoga class, come home, light some candles, and hop into the tub to read for an hour or two. The “no agenda” idea is fantastic, and is definitely something that would help me!

Well, looking back at when my husband was over seas for 9 months at a time for 3 1/2 years I remember how lonely it can get!  I NEVER went out to a bar or with girl friends while I was home waiting for him, I did a lot of “domestic” :) things, baking bread, sewing, gardening etc… today, I have raised 4 children and everyone else’s it seems.  I have been a Licensed Daycare Provider for over 26 years. Although I have many “little people” around me, it still can be lonely without an adult all day.  I still do the same thing and it brings me right out of a funk, bake homemade bread and soups, quilt and try to give to others with my homemade items. Ahhh the little people. I have worked at child development centers, and I completely agree that the smile on a tiny little face can light up your world. For me, it was equally as rewarding teaching high school and having your students come in to tell you something they were so excited about. :) I, unfortunately, cannot bake all the time, even though I love it, because my will-power is quite low, and I would eat the entire batch of brownies, then be depressed afterwards…and then I’d really be feeling the blues!!! Have you all seen the episode of Sex and the City when Miranda throws the brownies away, then digs through the trash to eat them, then pours dish detergent on them to stop herself from eating more? Welcome to my life.

The Happiness Project is a great book. I would have to suggest a long run followed by lighting your favorite scented (soy) candle jumping in the tub at the hottest temp you can stand, lights off and just chilling. If you have kids, maybe some Grace Potter playing softly in the background to drown out the “background” noise :) Is it wrong that I smiled and imagined actually doing this while reading it?

Walking the dogs, reading magazines like People and Self, hot showers, Turbofire – great workout and Chalene has an infectious positive attitude :) , watching Chelsea Lately, Jon Stewart and Sex and the City, hot shower, The Princess Bride, excerpts from Eat, Pray, Love. Comfort foods like soup or pasta, and chocolate chip cookies. Working out is key for me. If I get a good run in, I’m great for the day. If you all are into Beachbody fitness, you will certainly have heard of TurboFire. That’s my favorite. There is a 45 minute workout that, within the first five minutes, you are bouncing side-to-side to “Move Over That A$$ to Fat” and honey, if that doesn’t make you laugh, I promise nothing will.

I also love movies. Between my husband and I, I don’t think there is a movie that has been made that one of us hasn’t seen. Hitchcock is one of my favorite directors (The Birds, Marnie, Vertigo…) but when I need to cheer myself up, there are certain terrible movies that I always go for: Couples Retreat, 27 Dresses, 17 Again, Bridesmaids, The Hangover (Part I, I hated Part II), just to name a few.

I don’t think you can teach English and not love reading, and although I haven’t read much since my daughter’s birth, I can’t wait until I have the time to read again. When I need a good laugh, I pick up anything by Chelsea Handler. I have read pretty much everything she’s written, but the first ones are always the funniest. I was flying home during the previous deployment, reading one of her books, literally shaking because I was laughing so hard. I stopped reading it, since I was clearly embarrassing myself, but opened it a few minutes later, deciding that my happiness was more important than strangers thinking I was, well, strange. If you haven’t read The Sh*t My Dad Says, you need to download it onto your kindle immediately. If you can make it through the part about Angus (the author’s puppy) eating all the dog food with a straight face, I will send you a payment for the cost of the book.

At the end of the day, remember that your happiness is as important as everyone else’s. It’s easy to put everyone else before you, but make sure you take care of yourself as well. As my husband says: “Happy wife, happy life.” ;)

Do you have any other ideas not mentioned here? Please comment below!