We’ve all been there. A rainy Monday, a crappy Wednesday or even a particularly slow Sunday afternoon which seems to echo with melancholy (and historically Songs of Praise – British reference, sorry).
Yep, its January which means the Negative Nellys and Debbie Downers are in town.
I’ve always considered myself a bit of an optimist. I can see through the crappy times enough to know that everything evens out in the end and have found humor in many of my dark days. Looking back, life has been largely unbelievably awesome and very rarely cruel and I know that I’m lucky. Extremely lucky. I really don’t have any reason to be down. I’ve never been unemployed for longer than a week, I’ve never had to beg for food or money or clothing (unless my sister was involved, in which case, all three were involved and an awful lot of whining). I have a lovely, flawed family, and those who’ve left life.. well I got them while they were around. For 8 or 9 months of the year I bounce off the walls with joy and energy, rolling right over the ugly stuff and looking onward and upward. I’m lucky. I’m healthy (*ish). I have nothing really to feed my blues.
But apparently no-one told my serotonin levels. They’ve buggered off to Hawaii for the foreseeable, leaving me with two house guests who just won’t leave. Negative Nelly and Debbie Downer.
Shakespeare said that April is the cruelest month, but I say January is the crappiest.
Your credit cards are still injured from the holidays, you’re toting around an extra 5, 10, 15lbs of turkey weight, and wouldn’t you know it… its fucking freezing and dark. No major holidays to look forward to and only taxes on the horizon.. January is a fucknuckle of a time. (February isn’t much easier, but at least you know that there’s a mid month sale on chocolate (Feb 16th.. best.day.ever))
But January… January blows. Always. And this year???
Nelly and Debbie seemed to come early this year, inviting themselves in for an extended stay through the beginning of November, taking over the TV remote in December, and now, at the end of January, they’ve figuratively repainted the living room and are receiving mail.
I don’t know why. But damn, I wish they’d leave. I keep trying to ignore them, move to a different ‘room’ in my head, but no matter where I go.. there they are… pointing out all the bad stuff and moaning to each other about it. Money, work, friendships, weight, fitness, getting older, ASPCA adverts. the plight of the polar bear… oh boy. Its quite the party in my house once Debbie and Nelly get going.
The result for me? I’ve regressed to the 3 year old who just learned how to say ‘no’. Everything that comes out of my mouth for the last few months has been a ‘sorry I can’t’, ‘it won’t work’, ‘nope’ ‘sorry’ and did I mention ‘no’? I can hear it, I am aware of it, but somehow I can’t stop the words from coming out of my mouth. Even as I hear them tumbling out of my mouth ‘ It wont’ work’ ‘We don’t have time’, I want to stuff them back down my throat and slap myself for being such a pain in the ass.
What’s frustrating is that I don’t even believe or intend the words as they come out. Its as though Nelly and Debbie are standing between my head and my mouth, and even as I’m thinking ‘yes’, ‘sure’ ‘ok, no problem’ ‘maybe’, the words never actually reach my mouth. Instead out comes my inner ‘Eeyore’. I’ve tried saying nothing but Nelly never sleeps and once she gets going Debbie joins right on it.
So today I officially am asking the girls to leave. I’m done with the word ‘no’ and ‘We can’t’ and I hate that I’m identifying with the most depressed donkey in history. Plus if I don’t start saying yes soon, I’ll end up fired and really have some problems. This January malaise has to end and so my visitors are officially kicked to the curb as of Friday.
After all, Saturday is February 1st and I’ve got some chocolate scouting to do.