- Wake up at 6 AM (also known as the ass crack of dawn) to help with a charity yard sale for my school from 7-11:30.
- Leave said yard sale early to go to work for 800 years from 12-7:30.
- Breathe at some point during the long day.
I knew that yesterday was going to be stressful. It was one of those days that because of how long you know it will be and how stressed you’ve been all week about it, your entire week is destroyed by it in anticipation. That was yesterday. But then it took a turn for the worst.
I got sick. So sick. I felt like death sick. I drove around putting up yard sale signs for an hour, went back to the sale to help set up and within an hour, my stomach was twisting and clenching and punching itself. I tried to stay helpful and I put up a fight about staying to help but they sent me home.
I crawled in to bed hoping to feel better before I had to leave for work, but to no avail. I called out sick and slept the unrestful sleep of the ill all morning. When I woke up my stomach still felt anxious and my brain felt even worse.
There’s this thing called muscle memory. Once your body has done something for a long enough time period, it can be done without conscious effort. Like dancing. You learn the basic positions of ballet and after enough time they are engrained within your muscles.
I believe that there is also emotional muscle memory. That something can happen to you that your mind remembers so vividly, that are so tattooed onto your heart that on the anniversary of that thing, your heart can hurt just like it did the year before. Yesterday was one of those days. Yesterday was an important day to me a year ago. A year ago I was so so so sad and so miserable. I was in constant pain and going through a huge trauma. But yesterday last year was sort of a beacon in the stormy sea, a day that gave last year hope.
I think my body remembered that and freaked itself out. My emotions threw up all over my brain and made my body throw up. It got overwhelmed by the stresses of this year AND the stresses of last year.
I have felt venom pooling in my veins all week long, almost like my body was anticipating this day. A guy I work with came up to me randomly on Tuesday night and attacked my romantic life. He told me I’d be alone for a while and that I’d be hurt really badly in another relationship before I find happiness. Part 1: You aren’t allowed to say stuff like that to me unless you are my best friend. Part 2: NEVER say this to a girl who is already so scared to date and love again. It doesn’t help.
That comment, coupled with the hormones, coupled with the emotional memory recall has led to quite the build up of bioburden and venom trapped in my little body. I’ve been trying not to let it spread into my every day life and put me in to an emotional coma. For a second there I was losing that battle.
Stress and overrunning emotions leaves you with two options: you can hold up a white flag of surrender and let them overtake you. OR you can find a way to defeat the stress. Wanna know the best weapon?
When I was feeling myself getting even more lost in my own head, filling with venom, I sat staring at my computer screen, pulled up to YouTube. A video recommended to me was an Ellen clip from her talk show. I watched the clip and found myself inexplicably smiling. Without knowing it, two hours had passed and my belly ached from laughing so hard and my cheeks were sore from smiling so hard.
This is a good place to start your journey.
She is so funny and so positive. I have the tendency to let stress spread all throughout my body and demolish me. I’m a hopeful person but if I have a painful memory that is persisting in my head, it doesn’t matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to remain optimistic. But Ellen brings back some optimism to my life. She makes me laugh. It like her videos are sucking out rattlesnake venom and I can feel the stress slowly leaving my body. It’s pretty amazing. (I also enjoy how there is always one comment on her youtube videos that say the same thing about falling into the Ellen Video Vortex for hours without knowing what happened.)
The next time you feel yourself being bitten by the stress bug, or a ghost from your past sneaks back onto your Facebook feed, take a break to laugh. Take the Degeneres drug and degenerate that stress. (NAILED THAT TAGLINE)
Stay lovely. <3