When I get really depressed I am a lump. That is it. I don’t go anywhere. I don’t do anything. But when I am panicked or anxiety or just plain stressed. I bake. A lot. There was a time about, well a long time ago, that I baked four different coffee cakes, cookies and bread. All in the same day. There was a cinnamon coffee cake, a chocolate coffee cake, apple coffee cake and I can’t remember the other one. Not to mention the chocolate chip cookies. Then the kids came home from school. Surprise! One of the children asked what could they do to keep me this stressed so I would always bake so much. Humor. It keeps things going.
We try to use humor in this house in order to cope with all the hiccups having someone with ptsd and depression can bring into our lives. Which means that sometimes they are subjected to horrible things like a Godzilla film fest and popcorn. (The good kind, popped in a pan and then smothered with real butter and salt). Or other random behaviors that for kids mean fun. I didn’t have much time to be a kid. I am making up for it now.
Stress or bad days dealing with crap from the past are also taken care of by what I call “Big Brother” movies. This is not a reference to 1984 but to the big brother that would step in and kick the bad guys butt that was bothering you, that kind of big brother. I don’t watch R movies. I have had way too much intensity in my life already. So I tend to stick to the PG13 versions. But some of my favorites are movies with Bruce Willis. Also Godzilla. I watched those a lot as a kid and they have great memories. If Tokyo only built their streets about a quarter of a mile wide they would not have to rebuild so much. Just a thought. One of my fall backs at the moment is Battleship. Do not ask why. I could not tell you. It just is. I was sitting on my bed with a bag of M&Ms and my computer. My daughter walks in and looks to see what I am watching. I was watching Battleship. “Hard day?” She is nothing if not perceptive. I respond with “Why do you ask?” That gets me raised eyebrows. Next thing i know I have shoved over and she is sharing my M&Ms and watching with me. She is then followed by two more of her siblings. Good thing we are a close family.
There are all sorts of things we do to find a release for stress. Mine happen to be family friendly. But finding ways to feel safe and at peace are important for me. So in honor of November be a month for being ‘Thankful’ I will say that I am thankful for being able to bake and for all the movies and popcorn I have shared with my children and husband over the years as they support me through all this. Because without them i would have to eat all those cookies. And some movies are best with others. Except when they hog the popcorn.