10 May 2009

The evils of living in your head

I have been having a lot of me time recently. Some of it has been pleasantly meditative, a lot of it has been doing laundry and some of it has been spent wallowing in self pity. I am, as a general rule quite positive and optimistic, but, that machine breaks down sometimes.

Take this weekend for example. I spent a lot of time talking to my family, had a wonderful breakfast thanks to S who has simply been the most superb friend for the last few months -- an ode to her in a later post--then, we sauntered about in Covent Garden indulging in some window shopping therapy and I ended the day with drinks with a buddy from work. Quite busy you might think but I went to bed all cross about the way life has treated me and got up in the morning half dreaming of a violent physical act on another person. I am not a big fan of violence ; the extent of my bad wishes for people who piss me off oscillates between wishing them a cold water shower and a flat tire. So, this rather disturbing image was a nightmare to get up into. I have been getting some help for all the trauma of previous year and one of things my healer suggested was to treat myself with empathy. But, I'm thinking, how can I empathize with this homicidal thought?! yikes.

Exercise, I thought, would help dispel this image which got more graphic and disturbing as the morning progressed. So I set out on a long walk. For a while my mind got distracted with the thought - what if someone else is thinking about me this way, right at this time? Gosh, I hope I have never hurt someone so bad that they wish I was dead. Self pity then came back online and I was once again obsessing about how unfairly I have been treated and I didn't deserve what I got. Clearly, walking was not going to help. So I climbed into a train to treat myself to some Indian food and packed myself a magazine to keep my overactive brain in order. A few articles about displaced Sri Lankans, Pakistanis, Burmese and pictures of suffering people restored my rational mind a bit: in comparison to these people my problems were indeed idiotic and trivial. So much suffering in the world...

I got off the train and was walking with this thought in my head when I noticed a couple walking ahead, hand in hand, clearly enjoying the day and buzzing along in cozy togetherness. The self pity thoughts came back faster than a bullet train. Why me? Arrgh? I wish I has been smarter about my choices. How screwed up am I to have deserved such a relationship? so on and on... this was a losing battle.

There isn't a story or Astro inspired rule of life in this ramble. All I know is that after some food and some more walking the images subsided and I am only left with anger. Self pity has gone on a long hike, I hope and now I am tapping the anger out of my system. Its been a good journey , nay recovery, since the first post and yet, it seems that on some days...yuck!


  1. kem cho aunty! :)...these days, everyone has become my aunty (and uncle, depending on the gender :D )

  2. btw, wallow in self pity...nothing wrong about it...make sure you add a dollop of (ice) cream on top of it...it tastes much better then...( courtesy: life! ;) )

  3. My father always said'compare your life to someone who has not had the opputunities what you have in your life and you will get your mental balnce back'.Anger yes but no self pity please