John Kirwan's website, and keeping a journeyjournal. The latter helps me remember what it feels like to be at the bottom, but also reminds me of the things that help me - when I'm down, I find it hard to remember.
Jacqueline. Good. Oh, they had forgotten to make up Jacqueline's order.
Bad. Instead of getting annoyed, and worrying about how much time it was taking, I reminded myself, 'relax, there's no hurry.'
Then off to CJC (Creative Jazz Club) in central Auckland. During a
break between sets I turned around to ask the woman on the desk behind a
question - my glasses flew off and I knelt on them resulting in a very
twisted arm which meant I could only wear them if I had major cosmetic
surgery on my head! I went to text Mac to tell him I would have to stay
the night at Steve's place - and my phone died! It just kept turning
off, even though the battery wasn't flat.
drove us back home to his place, and I stayed the night. The bed's not as comfortable as mine, and there's no curtain and they live next to a very
busy road that trucks use as a bypass, so having gone to bed at 1.30am, I woke up at 10 to 7! Hanging on to the joy by the skin of my
I checked my phone again - planning to pull it to bits and put it back together again - no need! It had revived!
9am I woke Steve because I had to be in Raglan at 1pm. He got up and
made me scrambled eggs for breakfast - what a treat! Then off to the opticians.
Having gotten a reminder two days earlier that I was due for my 2 yearly
check up, I made an appointment, then produced my glasses. She was
sorry but they wouldn't be able to fix them - well, she'd give it a go,
but were sure the arm would break when she tried to bend it back into
shape. A couple of minutes later she came out beaming and said, "I WON!"
Home. Oh, I haven't mentioned the rain. It had been raining for abut a
week. But that day it poured. I got soaked and covered in
mud as I filled the van's radiator with water, and attached the trailer.
Changed clothes. Into Raglan to the garage for Warrant of Fitness
checks for both. Rain. Down to Black Sands for tea and bagel for lunch.
Feeling damp and a bit sad again. Just as I was nearly finished, half a
dozen Maori came in, all ages, sat down with milk shakes from somewhere
else, didn't buy anything. After about 5 minutes one of the waitresses
asked, "would you like me to take your order?" "Oh, no thanks, we're
just waiting for someone else," said the oldest woman. The waitress
didn't know what to do, but as the place was almost empty, she said no
more. A few more minutes and I was about to leave, when another half
dozen joined them, complete with several guitars and a 6 string ukulele -
and Dave Maybee, a local musician. They started singing carols and it was very cool. (And they ordered food and drinks once
they were all there.) The cafe filled up with people drawn by the
music. I stayed and listened and had another drink.
The van and trailer both got warrants, and home I went. Got soaked and muddy again as I did country chores.
I went back into town for my eye exam and yay! my eyes haven't changed,
there's no sign of glaucoma, and she said my eyes look very healthy,
and have great muscle tone - I didn't even realise eyes could have
That's a long and boring tale, I know, but it is also a wondrous
tale. Two years ago I would have been driven into the ground by the
sadness, the annoying things, the horrid things. Driven so far down that I would
not, no, could not, see the good stuff that happened. I would
have been catastrophizing (is there such a word? my spell checker thinks
not!) from the very start of the day. By the time I left that club in
Auckland I would have been spiralling down into a bout of depression - over what
are really very trivial things. And I could feel the pressure, I could
feel the perverse desire to wallow in misery, tempting me to take the
familiar 'easy' route. But I didn't. I kept focusing on the moment,
focusing on the beauty, no matter how small, that I see around me every
I don't think I'm good enough at this happiness thing yet to
cope with the sort of stuff that hit me in June last year, but I
am getting so much better. I used to hate people who said, 'count your blessings,' as it seemed to me that thinking about the little joys somehow trivialised the big things. Now I realise that those little things form the anchor that keeps me from the rocks. And I have also come to recognise that this
kind of conscious effort to control over how I feel about things is going to be my
life's work - I cannot let up for a minute, or I start to fall. Is it
my innate disposition? Or is it a very bad habit? I don't know, but I'm
trying my best to overcome it, and life is definitely much much better -
I can honestly say that I have been happy since June this year.