Tuesday, June 18, 2013

I Refuse to be Crabby

I have several reasons to be crabby right now.

First of all, I am beginning what in years past has been my downward descent into emotional hell.  Or, more lightly put, "not a very fun month."

I got through Father's Day.  Cried a little, but for the most part came out unscathed.  My birthday is next week. Okay...not looking forward to that so much, but too busy to be truly dreading it.  Just a hop, skip, and a jump to the anniversary of my husband's death and our wedding anniversary and I'll be out the other side.  Just three weeks to go.

My kids have me crabby.  Only a couple of weeks into summer break and my two girls are at each other's throats almost constantly while my son finds reasons to be outside so that he can avoid both their sniping and my anger at the sniping.  I'm tired.  I'm annoyed.  And I feel kind of whiny, too.

All three of the kids are constantly on the go, which is great for them, but hard on me and my gas mileage (both the car's and my soul's).  At the end of the day I fall into bed, too exhausted to open my book, only to wake up the next morning and start all over again.

All of this combined with relationship ups and downs (friendships, not romantic.  Still too gun-shy to get back on that wagon) that have had me more than a little sad...and I'm SPENT.

I woke up this morning with the dread and - let's fact it - depression I've been feeling for about the past week.  I hate that feeling.  I hate waking up with it because then you're already starting out with a bad day and then everything else for the next 12-15 hours of wakeful activity seems harder than it should be and that much more annoying.

Anyway, I got one kid dropped off at day camp and went to the gym, hoping that the exercise would cheer me up (that actually does sometimes happen).  And then I got in the car and almost made it home before I started crying.  Again.

And that's when I realized that I not only found my melancholy annoying...I was, frankly, starting to annoy myself.

It's not like I don't have a reason to be sad, but not all the freaking time.  If what I'm going to do is wake up in the morning and think of all of the negative things I have going on...then what in the hell is the point?

It was as I was getting dressed that I snapped.  I'm not going to do this anymore.  I can't.  It's no way to live the life I want to have.  If I continue to be this way, I will ruin everything that comes my way - even the good stuff.  I won't recognize Happy if it comes up and slaps me on the face.  I will become the person that no one wants to call and hang out with but they feel like they have to.  I will be the Eeyore in my own little Hundred Acre Woods....

And I don't want to be that person.

Worst of all...I will look back on this time in my life and regret not enjoying it in the moment.  I will regret that I was so annoyed with the fact that my girls were fighting all morning that I didn't have fun swimming with them in the afternoon.  That I was so focused on the crap that's breaking around my house that I couldn't enjoy an entire day.  That I'm so messed up by what's happened in the past...there's no way I can enjoy my present.

Part of my "moment-of-snap" was thinking about what's ahead for me.  In the next few months, I'll be working on the launch of my first book, something that is so exciting because I've worked so damn hard for it.  Am I really going to let all of this little crap bother me so much that I can't enjoy this moment in my life?

Hell, no.

Some people agree with this rationale and some people don't:  That you can choose happiness and positivity over wallowing and self-pity.  And I will agree that there have been times in my life when that choice has seemed impossible.

But I won't let that be now.

I'm going to be cheerful.  I'm going to fake it 'til I make it.  I'm going to be so damn peppy that people will be begging me to be depressed again.

Yup.  That's my plan.

I'll let you know how it pans out.

Widow Chick (aka, Catherine Tidd) is the owner of www.theWiddahood.com and the author of the upcoming memoir Confessions of a Mediocre Widow (Jan. 2014).  She is also a writer for The Denver Post's Mile High Mamas and a contributor to several books on grief and renewal.


  1. Love it! That has been my motto, too. Fake it until you believe it yourself! And, it does work...yes, I still have my moments, but they are fewer for the most part. I am making a choice to be happy, dammit...so don't get in my way :)

  2. Oh my goodness...it has been 9 months since my husband passed away and I am having "one of those days", Thank you for reassuring me that I am not the only one tired of feeling sad.