My quest to chase away the moody blues is working. As I mentioned last week, I switched up my genre of reading materials, and that helped. Next, I intentionally reprogramed my music choices. Gone are the sad, revel-in-your-loneliness, 1980’s Emo songs. Goodbye Morrissey, Sarah McLachlan, and The Cure. My new songs have to make me want to dance. Think, Rihanna, Don’t Stop The Music. I even started practicing some techniques my son’s cognitive behavioral therapist taught me. For example, when I start hearing the negative voice in my head, I imagine a stoplight turning from green to yellow. As soon as it goes yellow, I push the negative thought away and visualize the stoplight turning back to green…very effective.
Books and songs and therapy are terrific. They chase away the darkness. But what really helps, and I think most women would agree, are girlfriends. Girlfriends make the sun shine. So in the name of happiness, I am making an effort to spend time with the truly lovely ladies on my block. My neighbor Nuri offered to take me out to dinner a few weeks ago and introduce me to several of the girls on our street. This week, I jumped at the chance to organize a second, smaller, get together. We met up on Nuri’s porch, after dark, when our kiddos were tucked into bed. She played classical music from her outside speakers and I wrapped myself in a warm blanket, getting all sorts of comfy on her cozy outdoor patio chair. We drank hot tea and cold wine, we ate chocolate candies and delicate coconut cookies. Best of all, we talked. We talked about girlfriends, husbands, favorite movies and fashions, we talked past some of our bedtimes, until at least one of us was too tired to stay awake. I walked home to my husband, a big smile on my face. Books and songs and therapy are terrific, but there is no substitute for the power of an intimate get-together, with some wonderful girlfriends.