Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Ten great ways to handle the pain!

So far, I'm thinking, all I can say is woo hoo! I am coping far better this year than last.

Perspective is a great gift. So is heading over the hill, another year older. I find, even though the experiences and circumstances are no less shittier, the view of them is wider.

But - although we know what a depressive miserable old bastard Grit can be - I am yet driven to reflect, and turn my own sad ways into something useful! (See? I am so good to the people of Planet Earth!)

Thus, here are Grit's well-earned, top ten tips for climbing through depressive ditches. Those timeless pits of misery dug by life, and made accidentally worse by those who never see how truly crap it is. They just shovel in extra shit as you're scrabbling up for air.

1. Walk
Preferably outside the house walls. Pacing the walls on the inside merely irritates everyone. Anyway, walking out of doors means you must...

2. Wear clothes
Go the whole hog! In fact dress the hog in knickers, shoes (could be matching but not essential), clean vest with no tomato stains, skirt. Force eye make-up on the hog, with lashings of lip gloss on the hairy hoggy lips.

3. Think
Stuff the positive pretence. Realistic assessment of pros-cons, advantages-disadvantages works best for ole steel-eyed Grit, with cold, hard, uncomfortable, squirming, laser-beam scrutiny on all faults, flaws, and weaknesses, compared to strengths, successes and necessities. Leads to all round view of options, strategies, risk management. Then, after the brutal assessment...

4. Choose vice
Alcohol, in grit's case. Sad. Gin, specifically.

5. Take it out on something
Some might recommend cushions, pillows, or Postman Pat. But this is where one's own body also comes in handy. I hear physical exercise is a more socially acceptable way of externalising and owning pain than self mutilation, self abuse or self starvation. What the hell. It's all coping. And accommodating social niceties are not high priorities when you're face down in a gutter.

6. Ignore all negative judgements
Maybe there are people who murmur, 'I will never do anything as unacceptable as that' or 'How rude'. Maybe even, 'Unforgivable'. Think, how there is hope for them! Maybe they can yet learn to be human, and have a little life crisis for themselves.

7. Find a friend worse off than you
Sue (not her real name) is a case in point. Sue always cheers me up. She lives more chaotically than me! Broke? Unhinged? Given to acts of random violence? Child off the rails? Kitchen blew up? Meet Sue. Always a circumstance to make me laugh out loud. It's no coincidence she's exploring the stand up circuit. In her words: I exist so people can think, 'Thank God I'm not her'.

8. Fantasise
Delightful, delicious, dangerous, delusional, daydreams. Hands off them, they're all mine, perfectly tailored for me, controlled by me, and no-one's having any of them.

9. Laugh
Because in my experience people do not like the company of a miserable bastard. Not even me. I find smiling easy. Meaning it is still sometimes hard.

10. Be honest
The English say it like this:
How are you
Very well thank you

It should go like this:
How are you
Well, I had the urge to string myself up. I gave it 24 hours, ate a decent meal, and popped a happy pill. I feel a bit better now, thanks