Mental Wellness

Flower Therapy

One way I can lift the corners of my mouth is by cutting fresh flowers for the dinner table. I find each way I can promote my own happiness is a gift of new wisdom.

Flower therapy

A leaf, a bud and a bloom

Sweet scent fills the room.

–Rebecca Cuningham

Easter Lily Photo: Rebecca Cuningham

Do flowers make you happy?

Happy Manic Monday! –Rebecca

Mental Wellness

I’ll Be Happy When…

If the daffodils were blooming, I could be happy.

If I were my ideal weight…

If it were a sunny day…

If I had a relaxing vacation…

If my coming-of-age in Spain memoir were published…

If I were vaccinated against Covid-19….

Maybe it’s not the situation, but a decision on my part to choose to grab some glee now?

I realized that I am postponing my enjoyment of life until After My Vaccination. I feel lucky to have an appointment tomorrow. But I notice that meanwhile I’m crabby with my family. What if I am cheerful starting today instead? PS Also, the daffodils are blooming!

Are you waiting to be happy?

What are your thoughts about whether or not we can choose happiness? Please leave your comments below.

Happy Manic Monday! –Rebecca

Mental Wellness

Minneapolis, My Home Town

Today, the city of my birth is very tense. Protests surround the court house, according to my family member who drove through downtown earlier. Today the court case against Derek Chauvin begins, the officer who knelt on the neck of George Floyd until he was dead. Each day of the trial will be inflammatory. Will social justice prevail? I am in anguish, not knowing how long the case will be debated and what will be decided. Will the officer be charged with murder? What if he is not? When will racial justice begin?

Not so happy Manic Monday –Rebecca

Mental Wellness

Mid-Life Crisis Ahoy?

Ever want to chuck out everything? Friends, location, possessions?

I’m not happy with what I’m doing, how I’m doing it and with whom.

I want to buy a tiny cottage, tend a postage stamp garden and sell my books.

Total fantasy. I have commitments; a spouse and a child.

Why now? Well, it’s not the time of year.

It’s not Covid, not completely anyway.

I’m feeling a shift.

I want to get rid of 20 years of possessions and feel lighter.

I want to let go of acquaintances who don’t suit me.

I want to find new ones who do.

Goodbye old me.

New me, ahoy.

When do you like to shift gears?

Happy Manic Monday, Rebecca

Mental Wellness

Can a HSP Get a Thick Skin?

I love to write. I have a complete memoir and a novel, plus a draft of a second novel under my belt. Once my work is complete, the process of looking for an agent is crushing. Ten or twelve no’s and I’m done. Then I start on the next project, because writing and researching are the fun parts for me. Is this a character flaw? Shouldn’t I be able to withstand rejection?

In the last five years I came upon the term HSP, meaning highly sensitive person. When I read the traits that characterized HSPs, my eyes went wide. Click here for a good article in Psychology Today on the subject. Fifteen to twenty percent of the US population has this processing sensitivity to light, sound, pain, and emotions. These heightened perceptions are also marks of a highly creative mind and someone who is very empathetic.

Those sound like positives to me. However, it can make the editorial process painful. Last month I sent my memoir about studying abroad in Spain to a professional copy editor. I sent it to someone I know and trust. They were even-handed, tactful, and they even like the funny bits. But when I read the proposed edits, I dissolve into tears. I’ve made very little headway in processing the manuscript feedback. The changes are good suggestions, but I can’t seem to move forward. Any ideas for baby steps?

Fellow HSPs, what self care and structure helps you get through challenges?

Happy Manic Monday! –Rebecca