Lift

It’s amazing what difference a little bit of sun makes. It’s a pleasant landscape. Last week or so it was the perfect landscape for a moody horror movie. Think Hound of the Baskervilles, think the start of American Werewolf in London.

Sometimes life is hard to fathom. You would have thought that the better weather would lift my overall mood. Pick me up. Bring smiles. Well that’s the theory….

So why was I stood in this field feeling down. Sad. Melancholy. Lonely. What was wrong with this view.

How can that happen. Is there something wrong with me. Am I missing something.

It was a while later before the penny dropped. For weeks my view has been restricted. Often no further than the next fence. Yes it was moody, it was also a limited view. No evidence of a wider world out there.

Suddenly the world opened up again today. My gaze lifted. It is such a beautiful world and yet it’s out of reach to me. No real chance of heading towards (or past) those distant hills. 950 miles that way takes me to the Swiss Alps. Look in another direction and it’s family and friends. Look behind me and it’s a frustrating football club and then the mountains of Scotland. Several thousands miles in another direction and it’s….

Those things have been out of reach. In all probability they will be well out of reach for a large part of 2021 (maybe much longer).

That’s why my mood fell. I was reminded of life’s potential. Reminded of life’s current constraints.

But I will keep telling myself that there is always hope. Maybe tomorrow if the sun is out again then my gaze will lift my mood as well.

That feeling

Holidays, special occasions and anniversaries can be a beautiful time BUT…

They can be a nightmare for many. A time when isolation, fear, anxieties and loss are amplified. Where a spotlight is directed on what is no more, what will never happen and what is looming. A time when probably the last thing you want to hear about is all around you. Blasting out from the TV and Radio. Seemingly the only thing that people are talking about.

I know that feeling because I’ve been there. Been in that position. I know what it feels like. Even after 4 and a bit years (is it really that long). Even though I’ve started down new roads, new paths. Even though I’ve learnt to smile again. That feeling can still be there. It probably always will be.

With me it’s a double edge sword. That feeling hits. My heart and spirit drop. I want to retreat. Hide away in my room. Find safety and sanctuary there. Yet doing that immediately opens up that feeling of isolation and being confined in a small space. A prison. Feeling even more alone.

So yes I so understand this feeling. That feeling still lives with me. Not all the time but it’s never that far away. Especially at these special times.

If you are in that place. Your not alone. I’m with you as well.

Short movies

Dad can we switch this movie off. I’m feeling very uncomfortable with this.”

Son loves Marvel movies but for some reason he just can’t handle Spider-Man Homecoming. It’s just that one movie. The other Spider-Man movies he really enjoys. Certain movies just throw him. It starts off with him fidgeting then he is not able to look at the screen. Then he starts to pacing about. Finally he has to leave the room until it’s switched. Last night a few minutes later he was happily watching a Wolverine movie.

I remember the first film he did this with. We had gone to see Hotel Transylvania at the cinema. Within 15 minutes we had left. We ended up watching another movie and he enjoyed it.

So some movies just get to him. The last Joker movie is another we switched off quickly yet he loves all the other Batman films, even the much darker ones.

It’s so unpredictable. Just can’t anticipate these movie meltdowns. The problem movies don’t have a common theme. Last year a nondescript Disney Christmas movie set him off. At Easter the Pixar movie UP caused another meltdown. It’s not that they are scary. They are not more sensory than other ones. Not louder and not more violent. It’s not about death. We have never been able to pin the reason down.

But at least he knows that as soon as he gets the feeling that a movie is wrong then he can just switch it off. No questions will be asked and we will find another one to watch.

Dad it’s like you and your football team.

He is so right. These days watching them play is deeply unsettling and often requires me to look the other way….

Ghosts

I was listening to the new David Gilmour song and one line really hit me.

Yes, I have ghosts, not all of them dead.

For me that is so true….. Often the ones which are not dead are the hardest ones to deal with. They can appear at any time. They fill my head with negative thoughts. Once there they can haunt me for days. Missed opportunities. Past mistakes. Errors. Broken promises. Heartaches. Dead ends. Let downs. Sad memories. Inhibitions. Self inflicted hurt. Bleak times. They can hold me back, stop progress, bring on self doubt and herald the return of depression.

Those thoughts still live within me. They aren’t dead. Ready to reappear when I drop my guard. When I am low. When I am tired. When I’m facing a leap of faith. They all relate to past events but the memory still lives on within me. They try to shape my present day mood and choices.

Maybe it’s time to deal with them. Exorcise them. End the hold they have over me. Life is too short to waste. Its time to fill my soul with positive thoughts and memories. Ghosts should be dead.

Doubt

Sometimes you are filled with doubt. Sometimes you are beyond tired. Sometimes you feel pain. Sometimes you feel alone. Sometimes you are your own biggest critic. Sometimes you fear letting people down. Disappointing them. Patience is hard to find.

I feel like that about myself. I know you feel that way. We all can feel like that. But to the people who truly matter, you are a beacon. A shining light. Have faith and believe in yourself. Focus on all your many wonderful qualities, the smiles you bring to others and your limitless possibilities.

I believe in you.

Now to work on myself.

Mood baking

Apparently that is a cake…. Cake or Richter Scale 9 earthquake. The feeling of baking success….

Thank you Sadje for asking about my 10 favourite life feelings.

So here goes

  1. That feeling of holding your child for the first time. That moment of bliss as the little 6lb bundle of joy screams the place down,
  2. Feeling love,
  3. The feeling of warmth when you hold someone special,
  4. The feeling of waking up after a long and pleasant dream …. forgotten what that feels like but it sounds so cool,
  5. That feeling of joy when you realise it’s not Monday and it’s still the weekend,
  6. Those few moments of release when you get time to read a book or listen to your favourite cd,
  7. Finding that the empty box of chocolates has a hidden, untouched second layer,
  8. That moment of connection when you get an unexpected smile from someone,
  9. Sitting down for a bowl of your mums wonderful Apple Crumble and Custard,
  10. The feeling of elation when your favourite team wins a major trophy …. I picked the team which can’t even win the best match day pasty contest. No idea what this feels like but it does sound wonderful.

I was tempted to add finding bathroom paper (toilet paper) in the shops these days….

I guess the feeling of baking joy when you produce a wonderful culinary creation must be in there. One day I might be able to confirm that. Maybe it will happen this week, maybe in July when the Great Bloggers Bake-off happens. 18/19th July.

Remember the Bake-off is for everyone, including those like me who can’t bake. It’s not often we get a chance to show off our complete incompetence in the kitchen. Lets embrace our inner baking muppet. Let’s have a laugh and give everyone a giggle as well. You know it makes sense.

So from now until the big weekend I am going to do at least one bit of baking each week. No practice runs. Photograph the disaster. This week I might just have a go at a Meringue….

Remember to send in your baking creations (you can start early) to Mel so that they can be featured in the Great Bake-off.

crushedcaramel@gmail.com