Am I Blue …

A friend at work told me I looked tired yesterday. I’d noticed it before she mentioned it having seen the dark shadows under my eyes earlier that morning. I’ve been working more over the last few weeks filling in for someone who’s been out due to illness, but even with the added hours, my time at work requires a fraction of the energy required by some jobs I’ve had in the past.

I took a part-time job (one really I enjoy) to pay off an ugly amount of credit card debt I incurred when I was stuck in Atlanta last year and this week, I sent the last payment off to the two cards I owed.

You’d think I’d be celebrating, but I’ve been unable to rouse much enthusiasm. I also received an unexpected gift this week from a friend I met through work and it pleases me more than I can say to see it sitting on my desk now and to know the kind thought and motivation that prompted it.

John and I are both healthy and my family and friends in Atlanta are fine, but even with all the good, I still feel exhausted and blue.

My creativity seems to have disappeared and responding to emails from friends feels as if it’s more than I can do now. I think about calling family in Atlanta to connect, but even that feels like a struggle. Plus folks back home have their own worries and don’t need to hear me grumbling about some vague feeling of sadness that I can’t explain.

It’s not so easy to hide it from John and as I discovered yesterday morning, there’s no reason to keep it from him. After an exchange over breakfast that didn’t go well, I went back to his study and said that I may look happy and okay, but I’m not. I said I was feeling fragile, weepy, and sad and that I was going to need a little more gentleness than normal. He listened with understanding and is secure enough not to feel like he has to fix everything for me. Sometimes being heard is enough.

After running through a mental checklist searching for reasons and countering each negative with the bountiful list of positives in my life, I remembered what I seem to forget each year until I find myself deep in it again.

March and April are always tough months for me and with no good reason that I can find. You’d think after years of feeling what I’ve sometimes called ‘ The Easter Effect ‘ because of the time of year when it occurs, I’d be better prepared. But I forget until it’s here again sneaking up on me like it’s the first time making days that should be happy feel flat and difficult to get through.

I wrote about this feeling in a post titled ‘ Off Kilter ‘ in 2010 and after rereading the post and the comments it received, I am reminded that like Cindy La Ferle, I should be back to normal after Easter arrives.

April 8th … not too long to wait.

I wanted to share a couple of photos of a lone Grape Hyacinth that stayed with me this week during my gloominess. I found it intriguing that it appeared to be growing out of the rock.

I snapped the first photo a few days before going back for the next two because I wanted to show how it had found a tiny indentation in the long stone that acts barrier along the grassy edge of the village green. The most interesting thing about this for me was discovering how it was growing in the barest minimum of dirt.

Looking down into what was hardly more than a chipped place in the stone, I was impressed by the tenaciousness of this tiny plant and its ability to take root and bloom in a space where there was so little to sustain it.

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I’m sure I’ll be alright in a few weeks, but there’s no way I’m giving up sugar next year for Lent.

Estrogen Overload

For part of last week and much of this one, my husband John found himself surrounded by a houseful of feminine energy. Did he shirk from it … not at all. In fact, I’m not sure I have ever seen him look as content as he did over the last week with both of his daughters and his granddaughter here for the Easter holiday. I snapped this photo quickly from a distance peeking over a bed of flowers while trying to hide behind the tree to the left. I wanted to catch the interaction without being observed, but John caught sight of me just as I clicked the shutter. I am not sure what was happening here, but I think John looks pleasantly overwhelmed by whatever the conversation was at the time.

This was the first time since our wedding that we were all together again and it was good to see them interacting without the stress of our wedding and first time meetings. While I had met his older daughter prior to the wedding, I did not have an opportunity to meet his younger daughter and granddaughter until a few days before.

I really enjoyed the chance to spend more time with them and to ask questions about their childhood to see what they remembered about their dad and the memories they shared growing up. It was interesting to be reminded how different a shared memory can be based on the individual experience.

Speaking of shared experience, our first visitor from America is coming over early next month … can you guess who it might be? Need a hint to narrow the field … our American visitor shares something in common with me besides estrogen.