Over the last few months, I've been depressed. No, no, no. Don't feel sorry for me. I'm still as adorable as ever . . . just with a pouty face and a blank stare into the mid-distance. Did it start with my shoulder injury? Earlier? The attack in Nice, which even now assaults my thoughts just when I think I'm over it?
Before I moved to Germany, I was often depressed. I was the "moody guy". If you look back over my posts on this blog, though, you'll see that I've become the "happy guy," the guy who claims that Life is an Adventure, the guy who's up for the adventure. These days I've been down. I'm the guy who really doesn't want to get out of bed. I'm the disappointed guy. When someone disappoints me, I feel injured. I probably need therapy for this. Or maybe I should simply stop letting myself be disappointed by people? Hoping people will stop disappointing me certainly doesn't seem to be working for me.
Or. Maybe I should be more thankful? A friend of mine told me (a few times) to think of three things a day I'm thankful for--and I never have trouble coming up with them. I am grateful for so much in my life. I have a loving partner, and we have never been more in love than we are now--after 15 years. I have parents who love and support me and a sweet family.
I have a job.
And although I haven't been writing much in the last year, I have published a few things here and there. And I've even earned money on a couple of these stories. Ironically, one of the stories I made money on--$200!--is called "How to Do Fine," published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: the Power of Positive. Perfect irony: published in a year when I feel so miserable. Life has a way of laughing with you.
I'm thankful that other editors and writing compadres out there in the ether encourage me as much as they do. Nicolette Wong, Michelle Elvy, Gay Degani, Nancy Stebbins, Dorothee Lang, Jessie Carty, Jany Graef, Paola Fornari Hanna, Tania Hershman, Berit Ellingsen, Marcus Speh, Robert Vaughan and Matt Potter have all made at least one day brighter for me this year.
Conversations with S. Teri O'Type. Taking the time to read my book and ask great questions: priceless. Thank you to Kate Brown, Kim Menozzi, Dorothee Lang, Dan Powell, M.J. Nicholls, Martha Williams, Hart Johnson, Gill Hoffs, Michelle Elvy, Jessie Carty and of course Jennifer Noel Bower, the cover illustrator of the book. I'm grateful to Susan Tepper, Julie Innis, Lori Fischer and Jincy Willett for having taken time to give me blurbs for my book. All of these people took the time to help me. Thank you.
I'm especially thankful for the reviews the book has received so far. This one is from a reviewer who did not know me before she wrote the review, blew me away--so a massive thank you to Cindi at On Top Down Under Book Reviews.
I should be more thankful. And then there is the part of me that is still down. For now, I will call this balance: the understanding and acceptance that life demands equal amounts of laughter and staring into the mid-distance wondering what the hell it's all about.
What are you thankful for? What are you down about?
I must be off (to give my family hugs),
Christopher Allen is the author of the absurdist satire Conversations with S. Teri O'Type, available from Amazon HERE.