My Name is Matthew, and I am a soldier. I have an interesting view that I share from time to time with the folks I encounter as I walk the road. Some of those people have encouraged me to seek out ways to help others or simply share my views or ideas with more people. I will blog on many subjects, from things that piss me off on a daily basis to more important issues such as dealing with chronic depression and the struggles that ensue as a result. I will be taking bits and pieces from emails and rants that I have verbalized as well, so if you see something we have talked about please, smile and nod...Thanks for reading.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday Morning

This past weekend, I was instructed to relax. I was told by my favorite Lady that I need to stop stressing so much because it was causing me tension in my back. I described in another post that depression has physical symptoms that are just as bad as the emotional ones. Stressing can be just as bad. I have aches and pains that become more prevelant when I'm not careful about how much I stress.

This posting is about some methods I use to control and limit how much of that stress and anxiety I allow myself to feel. As you may have read in recent posts, I have things that are going on that keep me very wound up. My personal life and my work life are both points of stress for me as the situation evolves. There are good days and bad, as I suspect we all go through.

I have created for myself, little rewards and simple pleasures that I can enjoy when I've had a particularly bad or good day. One example, is a simple one, I have a sweet tooth. I know that my metabolism isn't what it was when I was 20 years old. Back then I could eat an entire cake, run 5 miles, and never see the weight hit me. My body would absorb it and float on by like it's no big deal, never adding a pound. Today, I'm a bit older and my body tends to take longer to break down fatty and sugary foods. One reward I have developed for myself is a pie. I made an apple pie last weekend, which was fun in the kitchen, it got me up and moving, and it wasn't straight sugar. Yes, pie is fattening, but it's not as bad as a big chocolate cake. I make chicken fajitas on my cast iron grill pan when I'm in the mood for them as well. Cooking is something I enjoy and having a menue laid out for me during the week gives me something to look forward to. Not only am I thinking about dinner tonight, I'm thinking about the fun it will be to cook it.

MJ, is a dear friend and relative and she has a crochet blog. Until recently she didn't realize that I crochet as well. I have used her blog to give me ideas and tips for projects to create. My back has been sore lately and getting up and going for a run on Saturday just doesn't seem to be something I'm ready to do anymore. However, I did go out and shop for some good quality yarn and start a blanket this weekend. It turns out that the lady checking me out of the store has a husband who just got done making blankets for their grand kids. I'm not the only guy out there who crochets! Not that I give a flying four letter word about what anyone thinks of how I spend my off time, but it is comforting to know that there are other guys out there who make things.

Personally, it's a point of pride for me when I create something out of raw materials that I can use. I make key chains out of leather and hemp, I grow my own herbs that I use to cook with, and I can now make blankets to keep warm with during the winter season. As I may be moving to a colder climate sometime in the future, and the winter where I am isn't exactly tropic, I am sure that whatever blankets I make will be used. I may also make a scarf or two. Imagine wearing a home made scarf that matches the one your Significant Other (S.O.) is wearing. For me, it's a silly pride thing.

Taking time for yourself should be something we all do. Working hard is good for the budget and such but you will burn yourself out if that is all you do. Work, come home, eat dinner, and then sleep. Seeking to have some hobby or a couple of hobbies that you do will enrich your life and make you feel some internal joy that you might not otherwise experience.

When I get home from work, I take a hot shower and clear my head of all the garbage from work. Then I turn on some good music and dance in the kitchen while I fix my dinner. After dinner I typically write or work on a crochet project while passively watching a T.V. show. There is no need to sit idle while watching T.V. Why not keep my hands busy making something beautiful and useful? The point I'm trying to make is that you don't have to keep yourself busy climbing rock walls. Not everyone is that athletic, or has that kind of time. However, if you have little things that you can look forward to, it may help bring you up out of the funk you find yourself in after a particularly hard day.

Being generous helps too. I made a mess of pickled peppers, twenty jars, and brought them to work for my co workers. I have had many people I work with who have asked for more. I suggested a five dollar donation per jar to keep me from spending all sorts of money on projects that I just give away. The first round is always free, the seccond I will ask for help with the cost. I'm not making any profit what so ever, but I'm not giving my own self into poverty either. The point is, if you can find something that you enjoy doing and share that with other people, you have this abundance of things that you gather enjoyment from. Cooking or crocheting things, keeping your idle hands busy, and making friends and or co workers smile by sharing your passion with them.

Any time I find myself in a particular funk, I either find a new recipie to cook or I come up with a new project of some sort to keep myself busy. It's hard to be miserable when you are actively working on making something. Even planting my little window garden, keeps me busy and I get to watch my plants grow. I water them every day and I keep the window blinds open to allow the sun to hit them. Sun is a good thing, it helps you stay positive.

I wish you all the best of luck and send prayers and positive energy toward you all. Thank you for reading.


  1. Cooking helps with my funks too. And my step-father used to crochet. He has been gone for many years now but we still have some of the doilies he made. I think you sound like you have things in pretty good control. Writing is my outlet too!

    1. Here's to good wine, good food, and good friends ! "I love cooking with Wine, sometimes I even get a little in my food". I'm not sure who said it but I know I read it on a refridgerator magnet. Right next to "Money isn't everything but it sure keeps the kids in touch". Such wonderful little proverbs end up being placed so cheaply on the refridgerator door or into a greeting card. One day true poets and authors will be thought of with respect again. Until then, we must rely on one another to appreciate true genious. Good luck to you and yours.

  2. Finding peace is easy in life with stressful jobs and stressful people is very important. You seem to have a handle on it. Good Luck :)

    Following from Blogging AtoZ.
    I'm writing "Things My Husband Has Broken" A to Z at
    Come by and check it out.

  3. I fake it real good. Thank you for the comment. Honestly sometimes I feel as though I have to trick myself into believing it's a good day even though I want to go into my corner and hide. Writing helps me get through it though. Sincerely appreciate the comment.