Gray Cloud of Swarming Thoughts

As the day wore on yesterday, I seemed to slip into a funk, where it felt like a gray cloud hung thickly over my head. Sunny outside, cloudy in my head.

I tried to find the source of the irritation — Mr. Anus client? or was it writing about mr anus that set this off? the low thrum of toothache, the completely frustrating ongoing computer problems, or the state of my office disarray.

I couldn’t come up with any reasonable explanation. But I knew FOR SURE that I was feeling antsy, and found myself rehearsing what i was going to drink and how it was going to feel when my 30 days of Dry July finishes … I could see the wine-thought-process coming, literally like a Gray Cloud of Swarming Thoughts moving in. A weather system you can see on the horizon as it slowly trudges towards you, and then envelopes you, overtakes you.

So right at dinner time, when I should have been sitting down to eat with husband (especially since we were eating early because he had to go out, and so i’d intentionally started simmering the spaghetti sauce at 3:30 pm just to have it all perfectly timed to eat early) … well right when it was time to sit down, i told him that i thought i’d better go for a run.  and that i was going to stay out until i felt better.

he’s mister easygoing anyway, he doesn’t care what/when we eat.  he ate on his own, and went happily out for his evening.

on my run, at the turnaround point, a children’s choir was singing in the park. Dressed in blue school  uniforms (in July?), and they were english-speaking, so that makes them tourists. To be honest, they didn’t sing very well but the sound was sooo sweeeet, especially in the sunny late afternoon, mostly empty park, a few stragglers listening, two moms dressed in matching blue t-shirts holding up a iphone to film them. Who were they performing for?

The song they were singing seemed like the answer to my problem: Coldplay’s “Fix you…”  [lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones].  If i wanted to run until i felt better, then that did the trick. literally it was like the cloud lifted right then and there. sun shining. light switch flipped on. goosebumpy shivers listening to tiny kids singing, in english, for me. I even sang along, standing there in my spandex shorts and ponytail.

Note to Self: Run until it goes away, and don’t come home until the feeling is gone. (And how long did it really take?) A whole, big, endless, oh my god, gigantic … 20 tiny minutes. Note To Self #2: Play Music. Loud.



I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • Gorgeous. There’s a documentary called Young at Heart about an elderly choir and they sing this. I cried through the entire thing.

  • My fix on the days I started having that intense argument inside my brain .. the addict trying to convince the lovely sober me that wine would be fine .. was to clean. Clean clean clean clean. I once scrubbed the bathroom hard out while the rest of the family ate. Just got really really busy…until the cravings/internal battle stopped. Rest assured … this is a phase and will end. But do ‘tell on your addict’.. speak aloud the words your inner boozer is using to try to convince you to drink. That can work also. You are doing SO GREAT. Really xxxx

    • cleaning is good. oh how i love your genius, mrs d., i always know you’ll have something terribly useful to add : ) get the clouds to scram AND have a clean bathroom at the same time, gotta love that combo …

    • thanks for this S4J, i realize that i’ve been sleepwalking through my life for the last 4 years that we’ve been in europe, and i haven’t really taken advantage (nor appreciated) all that there is here for me to learn, see, do, discover. Eyes and Ears are Open. Thanks for reminding ME : )

  • What a lovely post. To be reminded what pleasures there are out there – a run, a park, children singing, a great song. And to have a self knowledge to know how to”self medicate” in THIS way rather than reach for the booze. Well done girl. Now where are my running shoes? Seriously – I think I might just get out there as the antsy feeling has been buzzing around me too in the last day or so.

    • someone told me something is in retrograde… whatever that means ; ) well, to me i guess it means feeling antsy and watching my computers just willfully misbehave! thankfully a very slow jog is enough to press the RESET button. and man, don’t we all need a reset button from time to time! Let me know what you do to get rid of your antsy feelings, cleo, so we can start a database of things to reach for …

  • Belle, I remember going out for a walk one day and the whole time I was arguing about whether I was going to have a glass of wine when I got home. This was back when I was still trying to moderate and I was attempting another 30 (I never managed to abs a complete 30 the whole time I was trying to moderate, but then again I never managed to moderate either). Anyway, this argument was going back and forth in my head and I finally stopped in my tracks and said, “Okay God, I’ll shut up for a while and try to listen.” So I told the voices in my head to shut up and I continued to walk and I hadn’t gone very far and I heard an answer. “Don’t you want to see what’s going to happen?”