Joy in life or lack, thereof.

This may seem like a big whine-fest. It isn’t. It’s how I feel.

I wish I could truly say that on a fairly regular basis, maybe not every day… more often than not… that I experience joy in life.

There are moments which are happy and moments when I find a true  joyful moment. I laugh. I enjoy a good joke and have a good sense of humour. I love listening to music. I love my nieces and nephews (for the most part). I like my work (for the most part). I have some friends that I love.

But experiencing joy in life… in my life… I can’t say that I have ever felt, as an adult, that I enjoy my life or that I have a life I enjoy.

For the most part, I spent a lot of it going through the motions. Part of it, I guess, is that I don’t love me.

I was sort of off the cuff calculating the other day… I spend about 40% of my thinking about killing myself and 40% of my time trying to keep myself from killing myself and the other 20% of my time just humping along.

I don’t think that’s what life is supposed to be. Do you?

I mean, I know that life isn’t a giant bowl of cherries all the time for everyone and I know that my life isn’t “horrible”. I just don’t enjoy it.

Having to look after an ageing parent with a number of health issues, of course, doesn’t make things anyone’s dream life. I have no one to share the burden with… and I don’t mean sharing the day-to-day necessities and demands… I mean that I don’t have anyone to turn to and cry on their shoulder.  I don’t have anyone to just curl up with and not talk about things. Hell, even my cat doesn’t “curl up with me”.

I have always been a solitary person. Not necessarily by choice. I didn’t have any really close friends when I was little and we moved a lot and I changed school so frequently that either I didn’t have time to make friends or didn’t keep them. I suppose all those “abandonment issues” also meant that I tended to sabotage relationships because I inevitably thought they would end, and not end well.

Even now, with a number of good friends, I tend to spend a lot of my time alone out of habit. As well, most of those friends have families and relationships which limits the time we can spend together, anyway.

In some ways, I have always found it “safer” to be alone. But it’s “alone”. That isn’t conductive for forming a healthy attitude to life.

I have gotten involved with things but often find that I am more interested in the activities or events than the others are and they gradually drift off and there I am, alone, again.

I seem to go through phases, and I don’t know what brings them on, where I feel absolutely at the depths of despair. I could blame the news of my mother’s diagnosis on Thursday. But in reality, I have been feeling crappy since before Christmas. Christmas will inevitably throw someone for a loop. Some say that it is one of the most stressful things in your life.

It could be winter doldrums. Of course, I get them in spring, summer, and fall,as well so….

In the past, being able to have a good cry always helped a bit. I wish I could. I don’t know if it is the medication I take but every time I am on the verge of what I know will be a good cry, I end up having a gigantic yawn and the feeling goes away. I actually managed to have a little bit of a cry during Star Trek NG, if you can believe it. I fell a little better as a result.

Maybe I need to sit down and re-read The Diviners by Margaret Laurence. The ending ALWAYS makes me cry and cry and cry and I fell all the better for it.

Years ago, when I was living in New York, my miscarriage was still fresh in my mind and I was watching an Oprah program about the right (and necessity) of grieving over miscarriages and still-born babies. I was just starting to finally cry and my landlady knocked at the door. When she saw me crying and found out what I was watching, she dragged me out and refused to let me watch it.

I truly wish that I had stood my ground and watched it. I probably would have finally done my grieving, which I still haven’t completely done, 16 years later.

Trouble is, there are so many ungrieved things bottled up inside that I worry that if I actually let go and le them out, I’d explode….

I guess it is one step-at-a-time and one grief at a time.

I started to look for images to express joy for this post. I came actoss this one and staring at it actually made me feel good!

Joyful Heart

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