March 11, 2010

Free therapy

I'm here to admit, and document, that I’ve been kind of in the weeds this week.The record books will report that the temps are warming and spring might actually arrive. Yet, for some reason, I've been in a mood.

Andrew is excited about his upcoming Spring Break and I find myself focused on how expensive the extra days of care are and wondering how come I don’t get a Spring Break. We have a gorgeous refrigerator, that you might recall I’m quite literally in love with, yet I can only gritch about the non-functioning water dispenser and how I hate Whirlpool and the man who came to deliver the bad news. The hours of daylight are growing and all I can think of is how there is still too much laundry to wash and too many meetings to attend and too many groceries to procure and not enough hours to get it all done.

I'm not proud of any of this…just aware. I have been a real ray of sunshine, I tell you.

Today ushered in another dark and drizzly sky, which is so good for our trees and about-to-emerge daffodils but not so good for my funk. I found myself driving the boys to school complaining about the rain and the fact that it was colder today than yesterday, which seems like an unfair backwards slide. I was pretty much just stewing in my own self-concocted miserableness.

As I drove to work, already dreading things that hadn't yet happened, I was about halfway to my destination when I pulled up behind a yellow Volkswagen Beetle.  I did a double take and then said, out loud, "Skittles Slugbug."  I was that person clearly talking to myself at a stoplight. 

We began playing the Slugbug game many moons ago, calling it out whenever one of us sees a VW bug.  For obvious reasons we had to cut out the part of the game where we actually slug a fellow passenger, but the boys still like to be the first one to call it.  Then, a few months ago, some friends were riding in the car with us and taught the boys the Skittles game where you call out "Skittles!" each time you encounter a yellow car. The boys asked if we could do that and I encouraged it, because, really. How often do you see yellow cars? 

ALL THE FREAKING TIME, it turns out.  Mark and I quickly tired of the Skittles game but there was no going back.  We now just have to grit our teeth and ignore the cacophony of shouts that come each and every time we cross paths with any car of the yellow persuasion and the accompanying fight about who saw it first.

So there I am, alone in my car, calling out Skittles Slugbug!, and smiling about it, even though I'm in a mood. The light turned green and I proceeded through the intersection and around the corner toward my office.  As I rounded the bend, a car pulled out in front of me. As quickly as I started to feel my blood pressure rise because this genius had pulled out in front of me, I realized the car was yellow and found myself SHOUTING "Skittles!"  Then I laughed loudly, because what else do you do when you realize you're the crazy grumpy lady playing the Skittles game all by yourself. 

I pulled into the parking garage at work and headed to my usual spot on the third floor, passing not one, but two yellow cars on the way up the ramps.  Feeling as though I might be on Candid Camera, I had no choice but to continue laughing.  Someone was throwing yellow cars in my path to entertain me. And you know what? It was working. I found myself thinking that yellow cars are pretty cheery looking. 

It continued to rain all day and the sky got darker rather than lighter.  I am still, admittedly, a little less than cheery.  But, the refrigerator appears to have healed itself for tonight and I'm thinking that a few more yellow cars thrown in my path just might do the trick. I'm going to have my eyes wide open tomorrow on the lookout.  The moral of all this is to never underestimate the restorative powers of looking at the world through the eyes of two small boys and to never, ever underestimate how good it can feel to be that person yelling to no one in particular as you navigate the morning commute.


Rosemary said...

May the "rain" not come from the sky, but rather from your fridge's water dispenser. May you be inundated with "Skittles" and may those about-to-bloom daffodils bring a smile to your face, too. You give so much to so many of us. You're entitled to have a "grumpy break." I love you, Super Wonderful Fantabulous Susan!

Stephanie said...

If it's any consolation, I've diagnosed myself with SAD (in 3/4 seriousness) and talk to myself all the time. Now that I write that, maybe it shouldn't be consolation at all. And maybe, just maybe, we should plan our spa break sooner than later. Love you!

Angella said...

Glad you were able to write what you're feeling.

I'm like you in that I come alive in the Spring. Here's to an early one!

Maria said...

Glad it's not only me! Thanks for sharing! Can I join that spa day? :)

aimee said...

what is it about yellow cars that leads to giggling? once my husband called me after he picked up a rental car and took off for a client site... and reported that he got a bright yellow ford escape. and all i could do was laugh thinking about him driving off in a banana yellow car. it's hard to take seriously. and therefore a very good thing to see when in mood of grey skies.