The Cycle of Sadness

Sad face :(

Image by fmgbain via Flickr

This post is written for the ladies because I do not know many men who will admit to having these kinds of days.  Or if any of them actually ever do?  Health nuts I don’t think you want to read this – I’m just saying.  But ladies, let’s see if you feel me on this one…

It all starts when something sets you off.  A trigger if you will.  Maybe the guy of the week didn’t call.  Or maybe he did call and said something you didn’t expect.  Maybe your plans for the day with your girlfriends got canceled.  Or you watched a movie or show that struck some emotional chord inside and you broke down.  Maybe you are just feeling lonely for some unknown reason, despite the number of friends and social activities you have.  Emotions such as this are not always logical nor clearly laid out.  They just exist and you have to deal with them.

So you actively begin to plan your wallowing day.  Of course there are better, healthier ways to balance your mood, but you can’t be bothered to think that hard.  I mean this is a ritual for us.  We have this down to a science do we not ladies?  You go to the convenience store, load up on a few junk food favs like Oreos, Doritos, gummy bears, Ben & Jerrys and maybe a chocolate milk.  Yes gentlemen, we do fully intend to eat all of these things (or at least a part of each of them) throughout the day.  Do not judge us for it unless you’d like us to inject more estrogen into your behinds and see how you handle emotional roller coasters.

These things cannot be eaten while dressed for cuteness, so a change is in order.  You break out the sweats.  What’s your preferred comfort outfit?  For me it’s my uber-comfy baggy sweatpants and my 311 long sleeve t-shirt from like 1996 – or a cami if it’s summer.  Or an off the shoulder sweatshirt a la Flashdance.  Oh, and a messy ponytail finishes the outfit for comfort-ful bliss.

Now you are ready to move to your bed or favorite wallowing chair with junk food within arm’s distance (because getting up is not an option) and you reach for the movies.  Perhaps a super cheesy, Disney-esque comedy is in order (Princess Diaries, What a Girl Wants); perhaps a sappy romance with a sad ending (Sweet November, Walk to Remember); or a classic sweet romance like Serendipity, but if it’s really bad you reach for Titanic or the whopper…The Notebook – which should be supplied with its own box of tissues with every DVD sale.

Still with me?  Show of hands, how many of you have had this type of day before?

So movie after movie goes by and you are eating the junk food, but honestly it doesn’t taste as good as you wanted it to.  You swear Oreos and Hersheys have changed their recipes since you were a kid.  You continue to eat it anyway.  But it’s not filling the void.  Of course it’s not.  Why would mounds of sugar and high fructose corn syrup make our emotions more balanced?  But as I mentioned before, these are not logical nor easily controlled emotions.

The last movie ends, your escape-from-the-world plan officially thwarted as you are now unceremoniously tossed back into reality.  You look around at the trash and at your lonely apartment and realize that despite your valiant efforts to make yourself feel better, you feel worse.  Damn.  You went from feeling a little sad, to feeling more lonely (due to the romances and surge of emotions they cause) and now you have no energy from the sugar low and you feel fat.  You probably aren’t fat, but who wouldn’t feel a few lbs heavier after that shopping list?

Now you feel guilty.  For letting yourself wallow.  For the junk food.  For not being proactive in making new plans with friends today or brushing off what guy-of-the-week said.  And you really don’t feel like talking to anyone now.  You want to sleep.  But you are hungry because every knows junk food isn’t meant to keep you full for long periods of time.  But you are tired and have no energy to cook.  So you order a pizza (with extra garlic dipping sauce) because…well…if you already had an unhealthy day, why stop now?

Yup, that’s the cycle of sadness.  No matter how old I get nor how educated I am on why I shouldn’t eat junk food and why emotional eating solves nothing, I still do it.  Even with the knowledge that I won’t feel any better about anything at the end of the day, I still do it.  Self-inflicted torture.  And I know I’m not alone in this because women have been doing it for years and years and years.

So we go to bed knowing deep down that tomorrow will be a better day…


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jackie Paulson Author
    Sep 14, 2011 @ 17:45:34

    I have had sooo many days like this, and I call it being in a “funk!” I hate it when I get like that. I hate to be negative. I have to say that I know someone right now who believes in the law of attraction and he tells me that even when I want to be negative to turn it around. He is A L W A Y S Happy and full of bliss..I mean if a tornado were to be near him or what have you, He’d be saying I am so happy. Blah blah blah…that is NOT reality. Sadness is a real emotion and it needs to be addressed, it’s a sign that something needs to change inside of us! I am so sick of changing to make everyone else happy that it’s okay to have E-motions. Great post today DAY 1 🙂 Jackie


    • ficklefolly
      Sep 15, 2011 @ 02:34:29

      I agree emotions should be worked through and not easily ignored. I am positive most days, but everyone needs sad wallow days. They are a necessary part of life. Love the tornado bit…


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