Thursday, November 30, 2017


The culprit. 

Hello, my friends! I have missed you all for the past couple of months. And even though I have thought about y'all frequently, I have to say that I've been in a blue funk ever since October; which translates into very few blog posts.

I am not hiding under my bedcovers with a kleenex box dabbing away tears; this doesn't feel like that. I have lots of joyful days. Like when we have gatherings, like our awesome massive Thanksgiving weekend, I enjoy every moment thoroughly. But after everyone had gone, I could feel the funk creeping back.

I have thought long and hard about my blue cloud following me around, and I've come up with a few reasons why it's there.

First, I have had significant problems with getting restful sleep at night. Everyone knows what a measure of sleep deprivation will do to a person; like alter moods, and cause someone like me to do very stupid things.

An example, you say? Well. At Thanksgiving, I had one or two bottles of sparkling mineral water at each table and several bottles were left over. I love the stuff so have been filling my insulated mug with ice and mineral water routinely. I went shopping the other day, and thought I would bring some of the bubbly with me. Instead of my trusty insulated mug, I chose to pour the stuff into my auto seal sports bottle, tossed it into my purse, and fired up Sadie. We cruised into a nearby shopping center. After a few laps around the store, my mouth was bone dry. I stuck my lips around the sports bottle's opening and clicked the button to release the seal. I can't even begin to describe the resulting sound that came out of that bottle......and ME. I had been sloshing the bottle around my bag, which caused the carbonation to get extra fizzy, so when the seal was opened, air rushed into my mouth AND OUT MY NOSE. It sounded I have ever heard before. Oh my gosh.

And of course, it happened while I was surrounded by other shoppers. Yeah.

But back to my main point -- I was so sleep deprived and brain fogged that it never occurred to me that it wouldn't be a good idea to put a highly carbonated drink into a sealed container. I'm happy to report that things have definitely improved lately in the sleep department. Here's hoping that it continues.

Secondly: This will be the first round of major holidays for me without Mom. Every time I grab my recipe box or one of her cookbooks and see her distinctive handwriting on recipes that she shared with me, I am reminded of her and the fact that she is no longer here. As I unpack Christmas tree ornaments, and hang all those that she made and gave me, my heart strings are pulled. And don't even get me started on the subject of baking Christmas cookies. Zowie.

I think the loss of Mom is the major reason for my on again, off again experience with the blues. I'm hoping that after we make one cycle of the calendar and all of it's holidays, that it will be a little easier to hang her handmade ornaments on the tree come next Christmas.

The good news is that after taking the time to try to understand my mood and what could be the contributing factors to my blue funk, to really mull things over, to look at it objectively, I feel better. I really do. And rather than blocking my memories of Mom, I am embracing them and focusing on the joy that they bring. This is hard, but I think it is a good strategy for me.

With better sleep behind me, and a strategy for dealing with my grief, it has been easier for me to click on the "COMPOSE" button for Reasonably Well and begin to type. I am grateful for the resulting uptick in my mood. For whatever reason.

I am also grateful that mineral water didn't squirt out my nose after the carbonation made my cheeks flap and my nose vibrate. In the store. In front of everyone there.That would have been super bad.

I hope that everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving, and are looking forward to all of the December holidays.

Guys. We need to have another online Christmas party again this year! Someone will have to be responsible for keeping Terese out of the chocolate fondue this time, though. Hm. Any volunteers?


Amy Junod said...

I'd volunteer but would fail miserably. Chocolate fondue just begs for indulging. I think chocolate fondue would be sad if not snarfed down with immediate intention.

Christmas is indeed very difficult. I'm sorry for your hurt heart.
The Christmas after my brother passed was hard. Christmas was the last time that we all were together and we had celebrated at my house. Pulling out the decorations and putting them up was like a sort of torture. I was too hard on myself to "be festive" and "joyful". The boys were still young and I felt like I'd be letting them down if I didn't do all the decorating. (this was the year before being diagnosed also) Christmas boxes were everywhere! The boys ended up doing a lot of the holiday decorating and it turned out to be really fun watching them take the lead.

I hope that you're kind to yourself this season. I wish you wellness and comfort from Texas!

Anonymous said...

Julia, I laughed OUT LOUD envisioning your cheeks flapping and your nose vibrating!! So good to hear that I am not the only woman who does silly things. So good to see your post. I have missed them and you! I understand your blue funk, too. Holidays and family celebrations can be hard with grief hovering in the background. Prayers for you. Stay well!!

Anonymous said...

As always, thank you for sharing. Your posts help me to better understand my own thoughts and feelings navigating the holidays, and life as a Sjoggie with RA. I too have been feeling sad and thinking about the holidays without my Gma. She passed away five years ago but I still miss her so much. So today I will pause and try to think about the good memories.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing...and getting back to blogging...when you write to US it lifts our spirits too!
I am always comforted by the saying, "All hearts go home for Christmas"...remembering family that has passed comforts me and reminds of all the wonderful memories that I have to carry me through the rest of my life...may you have a wonderful holiday with your great family around you!

Kate S said...

Sorry to hear that the blues are following you around. I think it's completely understandable though, giving how much stress and loss you've gone through recently.

Please know that when you write, or share your pictures, you give us joy. And your "true life" stories are help us realize we're not the only ones struggling.


Julia Oleinik said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
annie said...


This time of the year is especially difficult for me as my husband entered the hospital on Dec. 21st, and died Jan 6th. He spent Christmas, New Years' and his birthday in hospital, was doing better, and then we got a call in the middle of the night to rush to the hospital...he had passed away suddenly. Nine months later, I lost my father.

It is really difficult even three years later to deal with. I still get anxiety around the date and don't enjoy the holidays as much as I used to.
There are two people whose places are missing around our table, they will always be dearly missed. It gets a little better with time, but grief never really goes away and leaves you.