It’s no secret I battle with depression. I’ve discussed it at length here on the blog. It’s almost a recurring theme. What most people don’t know, is that when I’m not in a dark place, I’m really pretty happy. I understand that I have a chemical and hormonal imbalance issue that sometimes takes a stand against my happy place (inbedwithmichaelfassbender) and sends me to dark places (anywherenearmyninthgradespanishteacher). Luckily, I’m pretty good at wrangling that beast back in its cage. I realize I am one of the fortunate ones. Not everyone can emerge from the inky depths with any sort of regularity.
I often consider the strength of the waves of bellicose blackness after I’ve emerged from their ebb and flow. That’s precisely what I found myself doing yesterday. I was stepping back, examining what it is that makes me truly happy and what triggers the torments. It’s fairly black-and-white for me. I have PMDD/PCOS, so, you know,..my red tent is more blackish in color. (that could sound particularly disgusting if you think too hard on it, so don’t.) The other huge trigger for me is negativity. I try with all my might to expel it from my surroundings and my mind. It throws me into a tailspin quicker than congress throws us under a bus. Or quicker than I’d be undressed if I were back in my happy place. (there’s a wink in there somewhere)
Yesterday, after a day spent with BroadwayBaby, GraveRobber (to be henceforth known as Biscuit Betty) and the Gaysian (aka Dr Will, since I’ve already given his given name) and of course, the Man, in all his shirtless-coffee-pouring-glory, I realized that they are some of the most wonderfully positive people I’ve ever met. I am so lucky to have them in my Brooklyn family. (ok, BB technically defected to Manhattan, but he’s coming back) They have the quintessential “devil may care and never say quit” attitude. I adore it. It is hard to feel bleak around so much light.
The funny thing is, while I was pondering the ins-and-outs of my ups-and-downs, HuffPo was apparently doing the same. LIKE THEY LIVE IN MY HEAD!! Along with the ghosts of my childhood, my drunk split personality (she’s talkative), and probably the NSA and Google Ads. They published this list of the habits of the supremely happy.
I agree with the entire list. I especially agree with the picture of the Cosbys. Mostly because that was my favorite show. I think the last item on the list should be “appreciation of Cosby sweaters”. It’s an underrated manner in which to achieve happiness. Stripes with paisley? Yes, Please!!
The article also discusses the importance of appreciating the small things in life. For me, that’s baking. This is good for you, because…
Caramel Apple Blondies.
Butter, sugar, fruit, love.
Caramel Apple Blondies
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Keywords: bake dessert bars
Ingredients (12 blondies)
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup minced apples
- 1 cup soft, unwrapped vanilla caramels, quartered
- 1 cup softened butter (two sticks, separated)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp mace
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
preheat oven to 350F
melt one stick of butter on the stove until browned
pour over brown sugar and apples and stir
add eggs and vanilla and stir
stir in flour and spices, slowly
pour into greased 9″-9″ pan
dot top of batter with cubed caramels and on top of each caramel add a bit of butter from second stick
bake for 25 minutes
devour like whoa.