Friday, April 4, 2014

Needing Air

Lately I've been feeling buried.  Life is pressing in from all sides, and this box I find myself in, is getting smaller and smaller.  I sit on the couch and look outside but can't find the energy or strength to break out.  Perhaps I'll lock myself in the bathroom, turn on the shower, and have a good cry.  When was the last time I had a good, hard cry?  2005 when my dad passed away?  This is not how I want to feel.  I know what I need, but it so easy to stay mired.

I'm trying to set aside a few times a day to focus on intentional thoughts and not allow this default setting to control my day.  Taking a few moments to breathe deeply and focus my mind.  Pushing hope to the front to overshadow despair.  In a more physically practical way, I am trying to force myself outside because I KNOW the air will start to wake me.  It always does.  It's taking the first step.

Depression isn't something I've ever had to deal with much.  After my mom's death, my dad's long recovery period, my dh losing his job and his depression, I had a rather long period of on/off depression.  Looking back, I recognize it clearly.  At the time, I was blind to it.  Having a good mental picture of myself at that time can serve as a warning beacon.  The warning lights are flashing.  I'm thankful I can see that.

Now to do something about it.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Clear Skies....

The inversion has lifted, and we have clear blue skies.  I went outside barefoot, ignoring the cold, looked up at the sky and breathed.  Glorious.  I just wish my mind would clear, and I could breathe freely in my mind.

I will go along for some months, shutting my mind to the things I don't want to hear, and then something will happen that forces me to pull my head out of the sand.  Bishops exorcising the demons out of gays, every week another gay being fired by a Catholic institution while listening to our local Catholic radio station supporting extremely right wing politicians who don't want to extend unemployment benefits and praising Ugandan policy on gays.  For a short time I'm able to focus on the beautiful spirituality, the Mass, on the Gospel message, on Jesus, on all humans at the table, and then doctrine squeezes it out.  I feel I can't breathe deeply.  Peace is replaced with anxiety, frustration, discord.  It always happens.  Then, in an effort to survive, I move away, distance myself.  That's when I wonder if the only way I can save any spirituality is to walk away.

And that breaks my heart.

I look for spring when I can disappear in the orchard, dig in the garden, smell the earth.  Then I'll find my peace again and be able to breathe inward, deeply.  I always find myself looking to make peace with the church when winter comes, followed by feeling suffocated and in turmoil, and then looking for spring when I can find my peace and breath and spirituality outside.  It's a cycle that repeats itself annually.  

Blue skies give me hope.