Lately, I’ve been stressed out with a migraine headaches, nausea, costochrondritis and an elevated blood pressure. I suffer with HBP (and take three meds), and have since my fifties. It runs in my family and has killed several relatives on Mom’s side. I had a red-headed cousin named Sandy, who dropped dead in her forties. I myself have had a heart attack and a stroke.
Thus I try to do things to relieve stress.
For example, I retired before I was 65 because I thought the job would kill me.
I’m not going into all the reasons I’ve been stressed lately, but one has certainly been David’s health. I wake up in the middle of the night and begin to worry needlessly. He’s in great shape for an 86-year old who just had major surgery.
Adson TV and in various publications for suggest coloring as a way to relieve stress. I thought why not perhaps I didn’t color enough when I was a kid. I bought myself a book, Adult Coloring 101, flipped through it to find information on the materials one needs to begin this restful, soothing hobby, and ordered them from Amazon. I began coloring yesterday. It went like this:
I sat at the kitchen table, opened my pencil boxes, spilled the pencils all over the floor three times because they are hard to hold, broke several points then looked at the pencil sharpener and tried to figure out how it worked.
Finally, I had everything assembled and selected the image I wanted to color. I began. Everything I’ve read had said this was a great way to meditate. But my brain did not care. I have never been able to meditate. After all, the Myers-Briggs personality test said I was a thinking sort of person, and if you are one of those, its hard to turn it off. Obviously, the Myers-Briggs was designed by a touchy-feely kind of person.
My thought process went like this: John Wittman must be at the door, the dogs are barking. I hear John outside working on the roll down shade on the porch. The dogs finally stopped barking. Johnny is asleep near my foot. My back is cold. My eyes are acting funny again. I want something hot to drink. The birds are finally quiet. I’m supposed to be meditating. Empty your brain. I wonder if Troy will come tomorrow, the Clethra is drying out and will be dead if we don’t get it in the ground. I wonder if the dogs woke David? Meditate damn it meditate. If I don’t fix that chicken tomorrow it will spoil. and so on and so forth as I worked away.
Soon I had to sharpen some of the pencils. I picked up the sharpener and examined it again. When I tried to figure out how to empty the darn thing I became interested in the mechanics. It’s German-made, I thought, so it should have an ingenious opening to remove the shavings, I found it, chucked the contents, and made myself a cup of tea while I was up.
David came through the kitchen looked at my handiwork and said, that’s beautiful, we should frame it. Now he’s colorblind so I don’t know exactly what he saw, but I said no, its crap and its not going on a wall.
All this reminded me of the “paint-by-numbers” kit I bought years ago. I framed that darn thing and hung it on a kitchen wall until it became covered in grease. One day, “I lost it.”
David says, “that’s creative” No, it’s not I replied, its canned. You just color inside the lines or all over if you like.
I left all my supplies on the kitchen table and went to bed around 9:00 last night because my migraine headache had a migraine. I slept fitfully fo for 11 hours getting up multiple times during the night. My back was killing me where it got chilled, and my wrist hurt from the repetitive action of using the pencil. The TMJ wasn’t so bad, however, and I didn’t stay awake if I woke up, which I did, to apply a Salopas and take Tylenol. I can hardly wait to get started coloring today, after I drive David to the hospital for therapy and get that chicken in the oven. I sure hope Troy calls because that Clethra looks really ratty.