melancholia

It’s been one of those weeks. No matter how early I go to sleep, getting out of bed feels like lifting leaden feet to the floor. I’ve been sick with a sore throat and cold. The baby, who used to eat everything, has suddenly become a picky eater. I refuse to budge, so he has eaten nothing but porridge for breakfast for the past two days, refusing both lunch and dinner. I adhere to the old school of thought that “picky eating is cured by hunger and a good hike” and I figure he’ll start eating when he’s hungry enough, but it’s stressful in the meantime. My older son’s behaviour has shockingly deteriorated and he’s turned into an unpleasant, bratty little monster who I barely recognize anymore.

A close family member’s marriage is disintegrating, which is deeply upsetting to me. A dear friend is undergoing a serious personal crisis and won’t communicate with anyone. Another friend just got hit by a car and broke her leg, making it very difficult to take care of her little children. Sometimes it seems that the sadness is overwhelming. During weeks like this past one, it takes every ounce of self-discipline to tease out a creative thread and turn it into a piece of writing because it sure doesn’t flow easily when I’m this mentally exhausted.

There have been a few slivers of light, however, and one was my trip to Kitchener-Waterloo on Wednesday to hear my sister’s trio perform a beautiful concert of works by Rachmaninoff, Haydn, and Glinka. For a full fifty minutes, I sat without moving, letting my whole body relax, uninterrupted, listening to the music that filled me with peace. Following the concert, there was an impromptu family reunion with all kinds of distant Groh family cousins who had shown up for my sister’s concert. It felt wonderful to share a delicious meal and visit with people I haven’t seen in years.

Another highlight was the meeting I set up before the concert with author Carrie Snyder (another distant cousin, actually). We met at Starbucks for a chat about blogging and writing, since I’ve been feeling that I’m at a crossroads with my writing and craving some guidance. Carrie had some great tips for where to head. It was inspiring (and slightly nerve-wracking) to sit at a table with such a talented writer. Carrie’s book The Juliet Stories was nominated for the Governor General’s Award in 2012 and she has a lovely blog called Obscure CanLit Mama. I left feeling hopeful and renewed in my writerly dreams.

The best lunch I've had in ages!
The best lunch I’ve had in ages!

Then I splurged and got a take-out order of Indian chickpea doubles for lunch on Friday. It was so good that I went back on Saturday for lunch with Jason and ordered the exact same thing without feeling one bit guilty, only stuffed to the gills and very happy.

I suppose even the worst week can have its silver linings, but as lovely as those can be, I’m hoping next week shows improvement. Maybe my kids have internalized my melancholic mood via osmosis and are manifesting it with unpleasant behaviour, so hopefully that improves as my health, energy, and optimism return.

I’ll leave you with a funny picture I saw on my sister’s Facebook page. Here’s to a laughter-filled week!

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2 thoughts on “melancholia

  1. Your sister always had the best birthday parties because she was born at the end of February. By then, we sun-deprived Canadians were dying for an excuse to spice up life and have a party. Why not throw a BEAT THE WINTER BLUES party? Just keep especially connected to your friends and family during this dreary times.

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