Yes, I am the classic moody writer. Spending time with me over a long period, can sometimes feel like a bit of…an emotional roller coaster. Some days the birds and singing, and butterflies are dancing about, and other mornings, “THEY ARE ALL DEAD! ROTTING IN A PILE OF BLOOD AND DESTRUCTION!”
Those that know me best, find my ups and downs….endearing (I think). At least humorous anyway. To make matter worse, I am a verbal processor, so those close to me, have to sit through my long extrapolations on my feelings.
I once told my ministry director that I had lived with for several years, that I was having an existential crisis.
“What is that?” she asked.
“It’s a crisis of existence,” I said.
“Okay, well, you exist,” she said.
I laughed. She had been through enough of those with me, that she knew the cardinal rule of moody artists–this too shall pass.
It’s not that I am bipolar or anything. I’m not. I’ve met bipolar people, and that is very far from what I’m talking about. I’m just….moody.
I think it comes from being a sensitive artist type. To me, life is all about feelings. All the experiences, people, possessions in the world mean nothing, without feeling. For example…why do we have friends? So that we can feel loved. Why do we travel? So that we can feel something different than our everyday lives. Why do we buy things? Because they make us feel better that we have them…more fashionable clothes, new gadgets, new cars…we don’t necessarily need these things. But they make us feel better. Life, is all about all feeling.
For me, I feel more deeply I think, than many people. Or at least I think about these feelings a little more. Every experience I have, is about how I feel about it. Every day I live, is about how I feel about what happened that day, and where my life is, and isn’t, based on that day. This is a lot to carry around in this head of mine. Believe me. I know.
There are some days I am very happy with the day, or my life. And other days, I’m not so happy about it. It fluctuates depending on what factors transpired, or what is or isn’t happening. Many days I can keep a lid on it. But, sometimes I can’t. And those around me, run for cover.
This is why today, when I walked in to work, my boss eyed me with hesitation. I knew the look instantly. He greeted with with a tentative, “Good morning.” I could tell from his tone, he was testing the waters. Was I going to be a pill this morning, or was I going to be a joy to work with?
I laughed inside my head, before issuing him a chirpy, cheery response. The tension in his face faded, as he surmised that I would, in fact, not bite his head off. At least today anyway.
Over the years, I have traced my moodiness back to a few different factors. Certain things have to be in place. First of all, my writing has to be the center of my life. Anytime my writing can’t be the center of my life…I get weird. There is also small list of creature comforts I have compiled that I have to have in my life. Anytime I start to feel moody, I have found, that for some reason I have compromised myself in the area of those creature comforts. They are small things—like a sufficient, but very unpretentious bank balance. It doesn’t take much to make me happy in that respect. A quiet, private place to think…and to write. And coffee. Lots of coffee. There are a few others but you get the idea. Small things that make life work for you.
As long as those things are all in place, I can be a super friendly, cheery person. Most of the time.