Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Emo-Pav, or, Anybody got any raindrops on roses or whiskers on kittens they'd like to share?

For some reason that eludes me but is probably biochemical, as, these days, I think most things are, I'm having a nasty attack of the Dreads. Never mind war, terror, or wars on terror; never mind anomie, accidie, timor mortis or the cosmic blahs; never mind what happens when the dog bites or the bee stings (these, indeed, go in the Good basket; critters rock) -- at the moment even just the housework, the overdue tax return and the unpredictable, nay, hypothetical income are sending me back to bed with the covers pulled up over my head.

While I have never known the counting of blessings to fail, and one has just arrived in my lap purring as we speak, I could use some extra suggestions about blessings to count, or any other helpful hints on snapping out of it, from any fellow blogger or commenter kind enough to share. Thank youse.


ThirdCat said...

The family down the street gave us a trampoline the other day, and I was not overjoyed, but then, one of my boys was bouncing on it, and he said when he was at the top of his bounce 'I can see the future from here'. I am taking great comfort from the fact that there is nothing in the future to freak him out.

Mind you, I do pay his bills, so the whole income thing - which often frightens me - doesn't concern him.

Stephanie Trigg said...

One of the recommended treatments for my current health problem is to get exercise. I'm unable to ride my bike as yet, but I make myself go for a walk each day whether I feel like it or not (and usually don't), but with the help of the ipod and the EmmyLou Harris CD a friend gave me (Wrecking Ball: "meet me at the wrecking ball; I'll wear something pretty and white"), it's manageable and restorative. For a start, you are close to some of the nicest beaches on the planet. (And speaking of critters, there was a lovely photo in the Age the other day of one of the Cup horses rolling on its back on the beach; a nice reminder of the other things horses get to do.) You might not see the future, but I bet you'd see something nice. Nature and all.

kate said...

I was going to say going for a walk too, but Stephanie beat me to it.

Gentle exercise has been demonstrated to be just as or more effective as a treatment for mild to moderate depression as medication - it's also a good preventative, so go for a wander round the block, and smile at the neighbours.

If you really don't feel like it, it can help to get a posse together and bully each other into it.

Zoe said...

Is this the kind of thing you mean?

Or how's this?

And I recommend a glass of very good champagne after your walk.

Maybe you're noticing the waning moon, which was full in Taurus on Sunday.


Pavlov's Cat said...

Thank you, girls. What a bunch of troupers you are. Everything helped.

It is not, thank God, depression, of which I know the symptoms but to which I am not prone. And it's not that I don't know what to do. It's more about feeling too overwhelmed to do it, or to do everything that has to be done between now and Saturday night ... and then turn round on Sunday morning and play frantic catchup with the piles of deadlined stuff I will have been neglecting between now and then. I'm sure you've all been there.

Kate said...

I second everyone else.

(Boringly, I have found my recent program of insistent Virgoan organisation has actually helped ease some of the stress I was feeling. Doing my filing, getting my tax done, chasing up on all those irritating little shitty things like the tiny but valuable invoices and late payments and so on and etc. None of it was fun, particularly not the $3000 tax bill, youch, but at least it got done, and it allowed me to stop worrying about it all.)

ThirdCat said...

Also, fishing from an Adelaide jetty at sunset is something my friend takes me to do every now and then when things are too much. That is magic and gives you good thinking time if you are needing some. And I never catch anything so it doesn't bother my vegetarian-ness too much.

lucy tartan said...

I have that problem a lot, and what makes it worse for me is knowing that my own bad indisciplined habits have contributed.

The only cure is to do something, anything, as long as it's completely absorbing, and not think at all about the rest of it piling up.

And you should reward yourself when you've done some of your things - don't wait till you've done all of them, heh. And enjoy your hard-earned reward.

Pavlov's Cat said...

'... what makes it worse for me is knowing that my own bad indisciplined habits have contributed.'

Yes, that's it. That is it exactly.

And once the 'Oh my God, I'm a hopeless person' schtick starts up, you might just as well sell up and move to a ruined shearer's hut somewhere north of Orroroo. Fortunately that's quite an appealing notion.

Ron said...

"a ruined shearer's hut somewhere north of Orroroo."

Do you have the keys or can I just move in?

I'm glad it's not depression. It has been a constant companion for many years and is seeking to forge a closer bond every day. It's not something I would wish on anyone.

Anonymous said...

I posted a comic by Judy Horacek on my own blog a while back, which is perfect for taking charge of that feeling of dread

Anonymous said...

Try again

Another Outspoken Female said...

Putting on marvin gaye and dancing to "sexual healing" around the living room usually works for me.

Also, chocolate has been known to be medicinal (and the caffeine might kick you into action).

If not - an afternoon in bed with cats and a good book, a large brandy in the bath, clearing out the bathroom cabinet, making soup, a funny movie...

JahTeh said...

I'm glad someone else has the dreads but I know what it is. Christmas is creeping up on us but it's still around the corner, only our 6th sense knows it's there.

Champagne is good, I'm finishing my Melbourne Cup bottle now.

FXH said...

cigarettes and whisky and wild wild women......

redcap said...

It sounds like Novemberitis. I have a dose myself and spent all of yesterday just wanting to come home and get in my wardrobe and shut the door. After all, puss is always trying to get into the wardrobe, so there must be a reason.

If you don't feel like getting in the wardrobe, though, I recommend sitting on the lawn in the sun with your favourite book and a few Haigh's dark chocolate frogs.

Ampersand Duck said...

All of the above, of course, and reading Sydney Smith (I just tried to look him up on Google and find that there's a modern Sydney Smith, but the one I mean was writing at the end of the 19th century). I highly recommend his letter to Lady Gerogiana Morpeth:

16 February, 1820

Dear Lady Georgiana,

... Nobody has suffered more from low spirits than I have done - so I feel for you. 1st. Live as well as you dare. 2nd. Go into the shower-bath with a small quantity of water at a temperature low enough to give you a slight sensation of cold, 75 or 80 degrees. 3rd. Amusing books. 4th. Short views of human life - not further than dinner or tea. 5th. Be as busy as you can. 6th. See as much as you can of those friends who respect and like you. 7th. And of those acquantances who amuse you. 8th. Make no secret of low spirits to your friends, but talk of them freely - they are always worse for dignified concealment. 9th. Attend to the effects tea and coffee produce upon you. 10th. Compare your lot with that of other people. 11th. Don't expect too much from human life - a sorry business at the best. 12th. Avoid poetry, dramatic representations (except comedy), music, serious novels, melancholy sentimental people, and everything likely to excite feeling or emotion not ending in active benevolence. 13th. Do good, and endeavour to please everybody of every degree. 14th. Be as much as you can in the open air without fatigue. 15th. Make the room where you commonly sit, gay and pleasant. 16th. Struggle by little and little against idleness. 17th. Don't be too severe upon yourself, or underrate yourself, but do yourself justice. 18th. Keep good blazing fires. 19th. Be firm and constant in the exercise of rational religion. 20th. Believe me, dear Lady Georgiana,

Very truly yours,
Sydney Smith

Selected Letters of Sydney Smith (Oxford: OUP World's Classics paperback, 1981)

comicstriphero said...

Well, as an amusingn visual nimage,n I just aboutn sliced noff nhalfl my thumb with my newn mandoline nkitchen gadgetn and am finding it hard to nproperly use the nspace bar iwth my bodgy bandage njob.

I've noticed nthat my thumb nsits very closen to the 'n' key when In use thespace nbar.

Pavlov's Cat said...

And people ask me why I blog. Honestly.

3C, I did in fact go and look at the sunset at Semaphore. It was nice.

Ron, the ruined shearer's hut north of Orroroo exists only in my imagination, but I'm sure there must be one. Unless that is too far north to farm sheep.

AOS -- don't have Marvin Gaye, but I find dancing to Aretha Franklin singing R_E_S_P_E_C_T has much the same effect.

JahTeh and others have suggested champagne, and I am with them. Unfortunately part of my problem is that there is no time to dance or drink. (I made time for the sunset, but.)

Or, Redcap, to read and eat chocofrogs, though that one is nice too. (NB re cats and wardrobes -- what do they think is in there?)

&D -- I love Sydney Smith, but I've never seen that letter before. Most of the cures sound good; again, a chance would be a fine thing.

CSH, LOL. You're a card, as my mum used to say.

FXH, I am a wild, wild woman. And I had my last cigarette at 3.30 am on the morning of November 26, 1989. But the whisky is a goer.

Mindy said...

Hope you are feeling better Pav Cat. Obviously lots of people out there who care that you are, so that should make you feel better too, I hope. I find that doing a little job gives me a feeling of satisfaction and quite often can be enough to get you going again. If not, at least you've done one thing. Also, the jobs you dread the most are probably going to be the least hassle, or so I've always found. Good luck, and if you get a chance, have a sleep for me.

Kate said...

I can recommend The Postal Service to you Pav as a bit of a mood lifter, if you're willing to dip your toes into the muddy waters of 'indie electronic folk pop music'.

dogpossum said...

I thought I was the only one carrying around a bellyful of low-level anxiety. But then, I thought I was the only one facing end of semester marking plus a million other jobs and then christimas as well.

Because I'm nursing that low-level anxiety (kind of the white noise of the anxiety world), I went to yoga yesterday. I am the youngest person there by about 20 years, and also in the bottom 5% in terms of yogic ability.
I'd forgotten how nice that Wednesday morning crowd is - everyone was squeezed by the musical theatre actor in his 60s (who's someone famous, but buggered if I know any more about him beyond his talent for Bunny Hops), from the grumpy nanna who kicks all our arses to the awkward queer bloke and our yoga instructor (who sort of offered himself up and then smiled in a whole-head way, obviously taking great pleasure in the whole thing).

Then we all hard all our arses kicked with a round of difficult inverted poses.
And to top it all off, I was teased by the Italian Nanna (who has been teaching us to swear in Italian) and the Grumpy Nanna about my dress (which is covered in horses) and Melbourne cup day.

That's the sort of thing I do when I'm feeling a bit crap - I go get that exercise and hang out with older people who hang shit on me. No one hangs shit like a nanna.
But as grumpy nanna says, "We only tease you because we like you. If we didn't like you, we'd ignore you".

dogpossum said...

I like the trampolene story, btw.

Anonymous said...

Oh Pav, I wish I could say something more cheering... only that I can completely relate to what you describe.

Cast Iron Balcony

Anonymous said...

endeavour to please everybody of every degree.
No! That's where we've progressed since Sidney Smith - that is the PROBLEM not the solution.

Cast Iron again

cristy said...

My only tried and true method of getting rid of "the dreads" is to pick one chaotic area of my life and spend a couple of hours really really getting on top of it. For example: paying all of my bills; or posting all of those unsent letters and emails; or tidying that one annoyingly messy corner... Once I have finished, I suddenly feel as though each of my other tasks is much more achievable than I thought it was, that I am more capable than I had realised, and then I feel better.

I don't know if that was quite what you were after though...

Anonymous said...

Pavlov, try this link:

I would also suggest looking at cute dog pics on the net, but I know you're a cat person.

Keep your tail up! Coy

tigtog said...

I'm so with you here, Pav. The last few weeks I feel like I've been moving into thicker and thicker treacle. Off right now to move away from the 'puter and tidy up a messy corner a la Christy's advice.

tigtog said...

By the way, Channel 7's showing Nine to Five right now. Let Jane and Dolly and Lily fire up your obstreperal lobe.

genevieve said...

You've all helped me too!! is that called blogpoaching because it should be.
All of the above - but Sydney Smith is pretty neat, as is the cartoon and the young man on the tramp-ampoline.
Kerryn, my family cheered themselves up as a group with the first two seasons of Arrested Development on DVD two weeks ago. You can moderate this insanity with a button if there are other pressing duties.

Bernice said...

Tiddas played very very loudly. ( but i wont gloat over the afterglow of a 60km bushwalk)or perhaps this sitcker sighted recently at gleebooks -
I don't listen to Alan Jones & I vote.