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Middle-Aged Jane

  • Writer's pictureVicki Jane

The Slippery Slide

I’m not sure about you, but when I overdo it I get sick. And when I get sick, my mind becomes slow and I get firmly situated on the pity potty. I have no energy, get depressed, and it all feels like it’s falling apart. Sick and sad is a hard funk for me to get out of.

I must say that the last 9 months or so have been difficult for me and this has been an ongoing battle. I had not intended for my blog to be such a Debbie (downer), but after losing my mum and then my father-in-law, having to change my work situation (not in the plan), dealing with financial stress (and unexpected foals - wtaf - but introducing Hattie!), and spending my 50th birthday at a funeral home, I must say that I have had moments where I’ve questioned it all. We all know that stress leads to sickness and when you’re stressed, you tend not to do the best job of taking care of yourself. I have also missed a lot of healthcare appointments due to not prioritizing my own wellbeing.

The bitch of it all is that as a self-employed freelancer, if I don’t work I don’t make money. There are no paid days off and no employees to cover for you. This just compounds the issue and makes me hate that I don’t have the bank balance I desire. I also hate missing deadlines for my clients and important meetings that I’ve worked hard to arrange. All of this makes the idea of getting caught up feel like a far away destination that is never going to get closer.

The other unfortunate part is that the things that work best for me to alleviate sadness are not easy to do when you’re unwell and when you don’t want to make others the same.

I love to exercise. It’s my number one funk buster. Gets me some endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine.

Travel always helps. Finding myself in a different place and experiencing good food and company is medicine. Sunshine is an especially effective remedy, and upstate New York is not known for it.

Listening to music. Last week when I was needing a boost (but wasn’t sick) I may have danced to Pump up the Jam at 6am to get myself going.

Getting hugs from friends and chatting it out. I’m fortunate to have such amazing people in my life. Attending social gatherings can also give me a boost, or sometimes have the opposite effect. Cheers to all the introverts.

Going to the barn, cleaning stalls, sneaking some pony snuggles, and riding. Horses are therapy.

Trying something adventurous. Adrenaline is a wonderful thing. It’s not for everybody.

Getting a haircut and perhaps a dramatic color change (I’ve been doing this since I was a teen). Maybe adding a mani pedi or a massage.

Practicing a little retail therapy. At least Covid taught us to use masks and wash our hands.

So how am I ridding myself of these blues given that the normal things have some challenges?

I’ve taken a few baths with epsom salts. I’m drinking tea. I’m trying to write (FU brain fog!) and sleep. I’m also taking care of a horse that was delivered to me this week that is also a little under the weather. We are quite the sight hobbling around in the wet pasture. My dogs are also a delight and make me laugh out loud with their antics.

I did venture out yesterday to Walmart as I knew I wouldn’t see anyone I knew there! It’s Ithaca 😂 I got some stuff, but not impractical things (this may be a small lie). I bought myself some nutritious items to cook. And I picked up a box of hair color from Madison Reed.

Some might say that this hair color is splurgy. At $30, it’s not what I would normally pick when there are so many other bad choices under $10. And whenever I color my own hair, it usually goes poorly and I have to have a rescue sesh with my sweet friend, Dom. But I did it. And I like it. I feel a tad bit better. I was reminded to put the scissors away as bangs are only fun for a moment.

As I work on ways to gain a little more energy, I am going to use it to plan my way out of this mess. Feeling organized and knowing what the tasks are at hand can at least make me realize that the elusive destination will come around sometime soon. I have now got a primary care doctor (though I had to go out of town for it) and am scheduling appointments. I just took care of my ticker and am now looking forward to my first colonoscopy!

And for all of you out there who feel overwhelmed and sad, I hope that you can find some ways to take that first step toward taking care of yourself.

I promise that my next post will be more lighthearted. At least I have hope that it will be!

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