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October 5, 1998
a year ago

Dealing

Drained day. I'm dealing. Slowly. One great good point has been that John and I are driving separately, so I've been able to get into work really late by his standards and actually getting some sleep by my standards. There is so much to do and so much to deal with that the addition of the bridge getting loose was so much I went haywire for a bit.

Amusingly enough getting it tacked down again simply took John making the appointment later in the day. It was the assurance early on that did it. So just plowed through various work issues. Got stopped dead in the water by some other things happening, but then started up again fitfully. So many things, so little time, so much on the brain.

It was Bob that reminded me that it was the Moon Festival. My lunar birthday. Dad then sent me an email note and that was cool. Bob even gave me a moon cake. Yummy. Salted egg yolk wrapped in sweet black beans in a rich, egg crust. Happy sigh.

We didn't start home until late, as John had a build to do, and then we stopped by the grocery store, as I'd been wanting to make Swedish meatballs for a good long time. So I bought the stuff I needed and we went home and I finally managed to shake off work again by making a few dozens of tiny meatballs, floating them in their own pan drippings, plenty of sour cream and a bit of fresh dill. Then served it all on egg noodles. Simple, succinct with garlic bread.

We then did the Fezzik walk thing.

The moon was brilliant, full, bright enough that we didn't need the usual flashlight, at all. It was glowing so brightly amid clear skies. That was really cool. Fezzik happily gamboled along as we walked after him, and it was funny how he stopped right at the mid-point and looked at us until he got his usual mid-walk treat. He's a creature of such wonderful habits.

I couldn't sleep when we finally got to bed. Part of the problem was fretting over the tooth. As in the part of the bridge that's come loose covers a bit of tooth. So that the gap is just enough for all kinds of nasty things to get in. I want to figure out what I"m going to do with it before it actually gets tacked back in, or if it gets tacked at all.

So I finally picked up the first of the Suzanne Brockman SEAL novels and read that in the closet of our bedroom while John slept. I wanted to be in the bedroom, but didn't want to keep John awake and the closet is very cumfy with plenty of pillows and a few blankets for when I want to do this. Funny to like being in a closet, but it's close and comfortable and comforting, somehow, to be hidden in there, curled up warm amid the clothing and the complete lack of sound. All the clothing muffle all outside sounds so completely, it's nice and completely quiet.

Sounds kind of odd when I actually write it in, but it was really relaxing for me, a recharging that didn't have much to do with sleep. When I was a kid, I used to do something like that, too. Escape to another world, another way of doing things, another story, another life for a bit.

Carl said that some other journaler with the study of neuroscience to back it up said that depression might just be, in part, the mind getting into the habit of being depressed. Of always thinking the negative thought, the one that always cuts off possibilities, and that always seems bleakest. And doing it over and over and over again until the groove has worn deep into the chemical pathways. There's plenty of evidence that learning actually changes the physical structure of neurons, and that the more impulses are fired along a certain connection, the stronger, faster, and more impulses go along that connection. So if one thinks depressed thoughts, the more likely it is that those thoughts just keep firing each other off.

I've found, practically, when my brain is wound up on a thought and can't seem to get rid of it, that the best thing is to get the brain to stop thinking.

This seems accomplishable in a number of ways, including wild, thorough, and really, really fulfilling and completely exhaustive sex. When I don't have that kind of energy, though, it seems that my childhood instincts were the right ones. If I read, I get out of it. If I read something that is going to end up good, is going to have some complexity, is about characters that I care about, and is in a world and in a situation that I never come close to, all the better. No spinning off thoughts about comparing my life with a fictional one.

And it nearly always works to break the loop. So at around 2:30am, I finally fell deeply and completely asleep, and dreamed of participating in anti-terrorist and bodyguarding operations.

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