I read a blog post today that explored the difference between depression and unhappiness.
I tell you this because it is important to know that there are some things you can’t practice your way out of. Depression, which is mistakenly used as the antonym to happiness, cannot be cured with a gratitude journal. But it makes you think you should be able to do just that.
Gratitude lists and journals can be exasperating when you are struggling with depression. I am grateful, but I’m disconnected from what that means. I can list my privileges and even small pleasures and feel humble and guilty. But it doesn’t translate into anything other than an exercise in guilt and that’s the sticking point. I know that I have many #firstworldproblems (hate that phrase) and so forth, but I also have an illness that doesn’t get fixed by attitude.
Sometimes, it is just a few simple things that stay with me through the week. So I’m going to start sharing five things each Friday. Maybe things for which I am grateful, maybe not.
I’m starting with five people with whom I connected this week in interesting ways.
1. J is a female friend who is recovering from dental surgery. She’s been helping me understand computer networks and how routers and IP addresses work. Plus, she loves cats. She always crafts an engaging email, like a letter.
2. David lost his mother this week, but took some time to chit-chat with me on Facebook about a blog post he has been planning to write. And to share a smile with me. He wrote this most excellent tribute to his mother on his own blog.
3. Our friend Joe came to our rescue when the smoke detectors went wonky and we could not figure out the problem. So I actually figured it out but only due to his helpful interactions and really long arms. Anyone who helped to make the beeping go away is a hero in my book (and the book of the dogs and cats.)
4. Our server at Club Cafe who somehow knew about my tweet wishing they served cookies and brought me a delicious raspberry chocolate mousse. And an Irish Coffee. That made my night last Saturday.
5. Sherry P on Facebook with whom I had the most actual interaction as in a back and forth comment conversation, not just a like. We were discussing transnational adoptions for the most part.
So that’s my list. Short and sweet. With whom did you have an interesting interaction this week?