Cheer Me Up! I’m Having a Really Hard Day For No Reason

I’m just really sad today. Not depressed, you know the depressed where life seems hopeless and all that? Nope, not that. Just sad. One of those “I want to wrap myself in soft fabrics and drink hot tea” kind of days.

I fed Albie Dog this morning right after I woke up, and then he promptly peed on the floor. And I woke up too early, so this all happened before 7am. That’s not why I’m sad though, it’s the fact that my reaction to him peeing wasn’t laughter like usual, but instead wanting to cry, that made me go “oh Margaret, you are sad today!”

Human emotions are such a rich rainbow, aren’t they? There’s stuff like my occasional anxiety attacks, where my head starts spinning and obsessing and I can’t concentrate. That’s not an “emotion”, that’s my brain misfiring. But there’s also just your normal baseline no brain chemicals malfunctioning kind of emotions. My normal baseline emotion is love and happiness. My car gets rear-ended, I laugh because I always wanted the dealership sticker removed from the back door and now it is gone. Someone speeds ahead of me in traffic and I think “oh that person must be in a hurry for some reason, I’ll keep a good thought that they get where they are going on time.”

I almost never feel purely sad. Like, when people I love die, I feel grief. You know, the draggy down tired foggy headed feeling. But I’m not sad, I’m happy that I got as much time with them as I did and grateful that they knew how much I loved them before they died, and all of that. If I don’t get the job I want, I am disappointed and wish it were different, but I don’t cry about it.

But today, I’m sad. 10 weeks of lockdown finally did me in, the Margaret Happiness Well is temporarily empty. I just want to cry and eat cookies and window shop online for puppies.

Give me time to fill up again, I’ll put up more amusing happy posts as soon as I can. And if you want to tell me amusing happy things in the meantime, that would be great. Prime the pump, as it were, so the usual Margaret cheerfulness comes spilling out.

For example, I am rewatching this delightful video from the Chicago Children’s Choir quite a bit (for background, there really was a local news story about a crocodile spotted in the Humboldt Park lagoon, which fascinated the whole city until it was caught):

And reading this news story about a dog that was waiting to be adopted for two years and finally found a home:

https://people.com/pets/iowa-dog-adopted-after-900-days/

67 thoughts on “Cheer Me Up! I’m Having a Really Hard Day For No Reason

  1. I have been trying out ways to watch movies online with friends, and so far have enjoyed Netflix Party and watch2gether, which works with YouTube. Both allow text chat along with the movie or video, and my little group enjoyed doing it. Let me know if you want to spend some time watching clips or dance videos sometime!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I am supposed to watch a movie with a friend tonight, and I am soooooooooooooo looking forward to it. We are even doing a Shammi Kapoor movie, there is nothing happier.

      But I may reach out this weekend, if the dead time with no work starts to get to me. Today I resent having a job-job when all I want to do is curl up and cry, but overall it is an enormous mental health boon, especially since I spend most of the day on the phone. The weekends can be deadly.

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 10:35 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. Kenny Sebastian comedy special is coming to Netflix this Friday

    James May: Our Man In Japan is on Prime and it is so culturally sensitive and respectful, funny and James is a delight as a blunt and yet a sweet host

    And this is the best tribute video for Mani Ratnam! Its been done so well and the editing is top notch with the music

    I hope you will feel better 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      • Oh right! I even told my parents to remind me, and they forgot too. Something about vitamin D, it’s just impossible to remember. Maybe I should schedule a daily blog post headlined “Margaret! Take your Vitamin D!”

        On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 11:50 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Oh my gosh, that Guari video is EVERYTHING! And I also love the cooking baby. I’m going to send him to my sister so she can feel bad about her baby’s lack of accomplishments.

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 11:48 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Thank you! Heck, maybe I should reread Harry Potter? Those books are so absorbing, I might forget to be sad.

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 11:55 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Well, HP books are my to go books if I want to escape a little from the day to day life. I hope you get to distract yourself with them too.

        What about a movie? Which silly, super funny movie is your to go movie? Maybe that helps.

        I would suggest Ice cream with strawberries…mhm…it could sweeten you day!!

        ❤︎

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  3. Remember we are all susceptible to Covid depression…this too shall pass and I love all the distraction suggestions…

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    • Thank you! good to remember, I feel like I don’t deserve to be depressed because my life is so great (job has not been impacted, get to live with my parents, have a dog, all the things everyone wants right now). But anyone is allowed to struggle right now, right? No matter how good they have things.

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 12:26 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. Happy things, happy things, hmmm! I can only list some random items so here goes:
    1. The smell of rain
    2. Finding an old diary after years and going through memories
    3. a glass of cold water.
    4. Blowing bubbles!

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  5. There is a fair, every year, where people can win goldfish, and separately at this fair Fish and Wildlife let kids fish for trout in a pool. Every year people dump their goldfish into the trout pool. Our friend works for Fish and Wildlife and has our kids (and others) come help net the left-over trout when the fair is over. Often the trouts’ bellies are full of the goldfish. But we were able to save two goldfish two years ago, and those fish are STILL ALIVE!

    My brother created an organic freeze dried ice-cream company called Cosmik Ice Cream and is SUPER excited about the upcoming rocket launch (it was just postponed to Saturday due to weather). https://www.facebook.com/cosmikicecream/photos/a.1573230792977283/2352085555091799/?type=3&theater

    If it weren’t for your clever review of a not particularly great movie I might never have discovered Allu Arjun, and I really love Allu Arjun.

    I have never gone fossil hunting, because I don’t know how. But a neighbor who is a geologist told us where to go so this last weekend we took the boys camping and fossil-hunting, and we found fossils!

    I never have to buy my children clothes because so many people give us things.

    At 75 My father discovered he loves Zoom. Also he cleaned out his closet and gave me his notes from when he took a class from Henry Kissinger.

    Someone with my name is a very prolific Christian Romance writer and I’m just waiting for someone to think I am her.

    My cousin-in-law, who has been writing since high school, has his first official book coming out from a real publisher in a couple days! It is called Lady Chevy, by John Woods

    My eight-year-old started reading by himself yesterday.

    Before the stay-at-home orders no one could hold our hamster. She didn’t like it, we would hold the hamster ball to the cage and she would happily climb in, so we used that as her mode of transportation. But now two of my three children can hold her. My son even made a video about it. He hasn’t learned to look at the camera yet… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bfm-dG-guo4&t=1s

    My night time panic attacks have faded away since I went to visit my parents in the Bay Area. We were both isolating, we were healthy, so hanging out with them at their house only risked other’s disapproval. But this morning, reading the paper caused tears to stream down my face. I’m a cryer, but I feel better after I cry. I think collective anxiety is real, as is collective grief. Some people are going to feel it more than others, and personally I feel expressing it is healthy. You wrote a healthy post.

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    • At 98, my Grandpa has mastered Zoom along with the rest of his elderly coffee group. More exciting, for the first time in 20 years, they are letting a woman join. Maybe because they are meeting remotely and she can’t get her girl cooties on them?

      I am very excited about your eight-year-old. That is a massive life accomplishment. And I love the video, makes me want to do an Albie Dog video, only he is terrible at everything.

      I am so glad you got to see your parents! I know that wasn’t the point of you telling me, but I am so glad! And another reason I am grateful I moved in with mine, it’s not just being with people during this time, it’s being with my parents in particular, such a mental health boost. Except for today, when I just need to crawl into my batcave and be sad for a bit.

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      • My doctor friend told me it was super smart to see my parents now, instead of later, as risks increase as things open up. Super smart, but against all official recommendations. Every community is different, and I really only know what is going on in mine, but if things are good you might consider going to see your sister? You don’t need to respond, I just wanted to plant a thought seed.

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        • I’ve been thinking that too, and then immediately rejecting it. My sister is across about 5 different contagion zones from me, so unless I drove 18 hours straight, no hotel and no rest stops, there’d be no way to do it safely.

          On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 10:19 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Tonight, I bring out the big guns, Shammi Kapoor 1960s rom-com! You can’t not smile with Shammi, right?

      And yes, maybe I need to do another Shashi themed post. Because he just makes you happy to know he is alive, right?

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 2:28 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. Margaret I feel you. I hit a wall at 3 weeks and 8 weeks. Then this puppy was not listening to anything at all and I kinda hated him. We had a great new trainer yesterday and he’ll be coming weekly and his advice and training tips yesterday made all the difference so I feel better.

    I am very familiar with real depression…and that would be ok too if it were happening to you. But I get that blue, ugh feeling too. It’s perfectly fine to have your feelings, even though you’re safe and healthy and have a job, blah blah. That doesn’t diminish your experience in this moment.

    Ok, so things to make you smile…

    1. Think about how you and I can work together with Bollywood Live to bring Bollywood to life for loads more people in the US. We are going to make magic!

    2. I was just asked to head up the first and only US branch of Team SRK, the biggest worldwide fan club. Which means you can be part of it in a big big way! If you want. Chicago rep? VP?

    3. You’ve seen this I’m sure but here’s a fun time. https://youtu.be/KAWe-wW5TOo

    4. And another one you’ve seen but just to remind you that you are a fan of the best person. https://youtu.be/wP9wT1MOCwo

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    • Yep, that hitting a wall feeling. I haven’t really had it until just now, moving between my parents and my apartment off and on every 5 days really helped. But today I just had enough, no more. Also, I have given up on training Albie and just bought more elaborate and expensive equipment (super leash! best halter! couch cover so he can get up there whenever he wants!). So you are a better person than me.

      I am only a little familiar with real depression, but enough to know that what I’ve got isn’t it. i’m still feeling things, is the thing, it’s just that what I am feeling is sad. In the usual Margaret bright sider attitude, I guess I should be grateful I am feeling something even if that thing is melancholy? Emotions add so much to life, all kinds of emotions.

      1. Yes! This makes me smile so much!!!! I need new projects!

      2. Ooooooo! Yes, whatever you tell me to do. SRK people are The Best People (and I don’t care of our Aamir Khanians overhear me, they know I am right). I want to meet more SRK people! New friends! Who are not my parents that I have been living with for 10 weeks!

      3. I had not seen that! Thank you!

      4. It’s true, he is the best person

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    • Rachel – If it helps, I kind of hated my dog initially too, and felt so guilty about it. I think it was mainly a lack of sleep (we were waking up every two hours) and him just being a puppy (peeing and pooping everywhere). But it does get better. Basically, once the dog started sleeping through the night, I started to see how cute he was. Glad you were able to get a trainer. Because my dad is staying with us, I am still not comfortable getting a trainer so it has been mainly me training and then forcing my dad and husband to TRY and reinforce it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It has been hard to do the overnight for sure. Our trainer came and we did everything outside with masks on and with no one over 55 in our orbit it was ok for me. I can share the schedule he gave us if you want! How old is puppy now?

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        • He is 4 months old. He really is a good pup and an easy learner. But, yes, I’d love your schedule. I am currently dog sitting for my sister’s dog also for the weekend and I am going to lose my mind. These two dogs are going to drive me bonkers!

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          • Here you go! He worked on 4 behaviors too but this is the crate on and out schedule and it’s helping a lot! 💕
            Confinement Schedule
            If used, recommended

            Sleeping
            Crate/Confinement (overnight)

            Morning
            Stimulation Activity & Free time (60-90 minutes, see below).

            Noon
            Crate/Confinement (2-3 hours)

            Early Afternoon
            • Stimulation Activity & Free Time (60-90 minutes).
            • Crate (2-3 hours)
            • Last confinement period before bed.

            Evening
            • Keep him out for a longer period before bed.

            Crate/Confinement Tips:
            • Use confinement during the day.
            • Start with a stimulation activity (below) directly after waking up from the crate.
            • Only give him 2 hours out of the crate/confinement (maximum) before having him back in.
            • Make sure when it is that time to bring him in, that he does so on his own. Use a treat if you have to.

            Complete Stimulation Activity:

            Each time out of the crate (when possible)

            • Bathroom Take him to the bathroom right away to empty his bladder. He should pee within the first 30-60 seconds of coming out of the crate. Urgently go to the back area, try your best not to pull on the leash.

            • Train: First 5 minutes of greeting him should be spent with commands. Look to cycle through each of the commands that he knows (listed below). Limit amount of play during this time. Look to have this portion in one specific place (living room). Have treats/kibble present to praise when needed.

            • Play: The play time should directly follow a 5-minute training session. This period should be approximately 10-15 minutes long. Play with a variety of toys, try not to put them on the ground when you are done, have them up and out of her access if possible. Play fetch at this time. Look to have this portion in the living room or backyard.

            • Feed: Give him a 5 minute feeding period at this time, after one portion of training and one portion of playing. Perfect setup for breakfast/dinner. He should have built up an appetite from both activities and is ready to eat. 

            • Walk/Play: This will be the proper time for a walk in the future. 15-20 minutes is a good minimum for each walk, for now. Look to play with him for 5 minutes when coming back home. I do encourage walking twice per day so that their energy level is balanced when at home. For now, play extra during this time (fetch, tug, run around).

            • After this play time, a period of free time is discretionary.

            • Free time is time in the house after this stimulation activity has completed. This is the ideal time period where we want to look for him to rest within the home.

            • Look to give him minimal interaction at this time, so that we are best setting him up for rest.

            ⁃ Take him out to the bathroom area every 15 minutes when he is out of the crate.

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          • This is Albie Dog’s schedule! Except instead of “crate”, say “the entire couch where he lolls around sleeping”. And instead of “Training and play” say “pulls desperately on the leash trying to get at a squirrel while I pull in the opposite direction”. And “free time” is “following me around so closely that his nose keeps bumping into my knee”.

            What I am saying is, do what Rachel says, not me. Or else your dog will turn out like Albie dog.

            On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 12:40 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Honestly, I can’t risk not doing this – this dog will probably be 75 lbs.

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          • It’s amazing having a small dog!!!! Wants to kill a squirrel? Pick him up! Trying to escape out the backdoor? Pick him up! Eating random human food off table surfaces? Pick him up! I wasted so much time with bigger dogs actually trying to get them to listen to me, don’t have to do that any more, and the only downside is my arms/face tend to get scratched up from random excited dog flailing.

            On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 1:52 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Thank you so much! I did something very similar without the 2-3 crate time, which I regret. I am now worried that when we all go back to work, he is going to have severe separation anxiety. Thank you, again! I will have a 60 lb dog as well so I need good training to make sure he is not a nuisance.

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    • Professor! I haven’t seen it, but the plot description alone sounds like a guaranteed winner. Don’t tell me anything about it! I want to be surprised.

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 4:21 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • It was super fun! And Shammi is dreamy in love scenes. Sooooooooooooo sexy.

          On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 8:34 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Warning, weird thing, Guru Dutt co-wrote the script and the first ten minutes and last ten minutes are super Guru Dutt-y (mother and sign mutually lie to each other that they already ate dinner as they try to convince the other one to eat the sad plate of rice that is all they have to eat). And then the whole rest of the movie is ridiculous and lighthearted. It’s a bit whiplash-y.

            On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 10:10 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I remember that actually. Oh oh maybe you can watch Dil Tera Ashique with Madhuri in Shammi’s role and do a post comparing the two? And same warning for DTA. Anupam Kher is truly evil to the children! But you see Madhuri is all her delighful antics.

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          • Does Madhuri also have a teasing curl on her forehead, and the ability to suddenly reach out towards you and tip her head to the side and give you bedroom eyes that make your heart go pittapat?

            On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 10:13 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Yupp. Even as a straight woman, I can totally tell you that Madhuri is super crush-worthy in the movie and has the most adorable curls. I haven’t seen either movie ina long time but I remember having a total crush on Madhuri in that movie.

            Now, I can’t wait to re-watch both movies.

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          • That’s insane, it’s THE SAME CURL!!!!!

            On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 10:48 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • See, now you HAVE to watch it. I will say, I remember Anupam Kher being much more outright abusive comparared to Lalita Pawar, but just like Professor, it has the super sad children being treated poorly parts and then overall a very light hearted comedy that showcases Shammi and Madhuri’s comedy skills.

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      • You should listen! It’s not perfect, treatment of mental health issues and drug addiction is just plain weird, but Sid M. is dreamy and the romance is MWAH! Perfection!

        On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 12:44 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        Liked by 2 people

      • You should! I agree with Margaret. As someome who deals with mental health and substance use disorders on a daily basis at work, the treatment of these conditions is horrific. But the Sid-Pari chemistry, innocence, and romance is just so good that I can overlook the giant flaws. It is one of those movies that I avoided watching for a VERY long time because of its treatment of MH/SUDs but I am so glad I watched it. Punjabi wedding song might be my other favorite song from the movie!

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Just offering sympathies. It has been a week here too. My philosophy is we all get to lose it once in a while. Last week it was me. This week, I caught my six-year-old playing video games when he was supposed to be doing schoolwork (as in I popped my head in during a three minute break between meetings) and he went bat****. Started screaming and crying, tried to push me out, punched me in the stomach. (Don’t worry, it didn’t hurt, he’s not very big yet.) Then the next day my ten-year-old argued with my husband and packed all his clothes into a backpack and prepared to leave the house. I asked him where he was planning on going and he said “not here”. I mean, I feel ya, kid! We’re usually a pretty happy household, it’s just been a long…it’s just been long. Currently trying to come up with a plan for summer that gives us all something to look forward to.

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    • I used to do that when I was 6! All my feelings just got too much for my little body and I had to scream and kick and throw things. I remember it feeling really weird and upsetting. And then I would wear myself out and need a long cuddle.

      I think this might be the return of camping. I just said in another comment that I am tempted to drive out to visit my sister but it would be impossible to do it unless I sleep in my car. If I had a tent, problem solved!

      On Thu, May 28, 2020 at 10:53 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • YES! I also want to go to “Not Here”!!!!! Your son and I should meet up and travel America.

          On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 10:27 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • REI is sold out of toilet seat buckets and wag bags. The restroom problem is on everyone’s mind. But camping is easier now than ever, they have super easy pop-up tents now, simple stoves…

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    • This is a lot for all us including our little guys. Our summer plan is that we are opening our bubble to include one other family- my sister and her husband and kids. Yes Margaret! That means Rishi Jr. will be here! They are coming all day every day so the kids can be together and we are even creating a fake lame camp called Camp MEH (Marin, Evan and Huxley) tagline – ‘Lower Your Expectations’. So I’m recommending that if you’re comfortable, find another family who has sheltered in place since this began and make a slightly expanded bubble. It’s working well in NZ. I think Canada as well. This way the grownups have ppl to talk to (and RJ and I can work on our project), the working grownups can work, kids and dogs can do anything. Like fight club level, I don’t care anymore.

      As long as you all agree on shared rules for keeping safe, the incremental risk is low.

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      • Yes, we’ve combined forces with the family next door from the beginning. They’re good friends of ours and have kids about the same age. We all are careful so we can hang out together. It’s been a great relief valve. Even so, the idea of spending the whole summer in this house, then school starting again in September, potentially still in this house, makes me want to scream and cry and punch things too. Thus the summer planning. Maybe to my family in Colorado, just seems very far when we don’t want to get on an airplane.

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        • I hear you Emily. So glad you’ve had that release in place. So hard without it! I feel you on the trapped thing. Every time I hit a wall I feel like I need to excuse myself from the family but that’s easier said than done. One of our plans with G&L is to take a road trip in July. We rented an amazing house right outside of Yosemite National Park and are spending a week there. Pool, hot tub and proximity to hiking…should be wonderful and so needed by all of us, especially the kids who have had to deal with their life changing so much in a short time. Just a reminder of how fortunate we are that this is the first time we’ve had a major issue. Most of the world faces worse on a regular day. I don’t know how far you are from CO but a drive might be a nice way out of the house even if it’s less pleasant than flying and just getting there.

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          • We’re in NJ, it’s about three days. I’ve done the drive a few times, it’s the flat and boring part of the country to look at, especially when you can’t spend time stopping in towns or cities and talking with people. It would be the first multi day car trip for the kids, they’ve been spoiled. Still, sounds better than getting in a plane anytime soon, and once we’re out there it would be more space and a nice change of pace. Plus seeing my family. We’ll see!

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          • My sis lives in West Orange…yeah it’s a long boring drive for sure when you can’t get friendly with the locals on the way.

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  8. Aww thanks for sharing the Chance the Snapper song! My friend and I ended up in Humboldt Park last year and just missed out on seeing him by half an hour.

    I hope you’re feeling better! Those days are really tough to get through, but I hope you found something to make you smile/laugh. Watching people completely wipeout always makes me laugh and seems to do the trick!

    Like

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