Tears of a Clown

15 Nov

NaNoWriNO Day 15

Topic: Third Life Crisis

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This topic wasn’t suggested, but I thought I’d give myself a pass and write about it anyway. It’s something happening in my life, and is something I really need to get off my chest. Additionally, this is my blog and I’m a tyrant.

The truth is, I’ve been in some strange downward spiral over the last few months. Maybe it’s more of a sadness black hole I’m being sucked into. Whatever it is, I want so badly to get off this train to crazy town already.

It’s not one thing plaguing me. Some people can identify that it’s their job or relationship or financial situation. Mine is…everything. I suffer from anxiety, and have a history of depression. It’s mostly under control thanks to coping mechanisms I’ve acquired over the years, but it occasionally creeps up on me. It feels like a ton of bricks crashing down on me, and then having a steamroller come by and run my ass over.

Sometimes I lay awake at night worrying about everything. I’m sure I’m going to get laid-off at work. I’m sure my parents are disappointed in me. I’m sure I didn’t pay all of my bills on time. I’m sure I didn’t lock the front door. I once got out of bed at 4 in the morning and brushed my teeth twice because I had eaten candy earlier in the night, and was convinced my teeth would fall out overnight if I didn’t. Anxiety is the mistress you wish would stop calling your house.

Then there’s the depression. Some days a cloud of malaise hangs over me, but it’s still manageable. I have a beer, or crawl into my sweats and watch reality television until it’s time for bed. Other times I wake up nearly in tears, and have to force myself to get out of bed.

Most people are really surprised to learn this about me. I’ve been told several times, “You’re the happiest person I know. What’s your secret?” My secret is that I’m a fucking wreck on the inside.

Eventually the fog lifts, and I poke my head out. Lather, rinse, repeat.

One of the worst things about these afflictions is the extreme guilt and embarrassment you feel as a result. You’ve let people see you at your worst, and you wonder if you could have done more to be better for them. Forgiving yourself is the hardest part of it all.

I’m choosing to forgive myself for this 12 rounds in the ring with my mind. I’m a good person, and I don’t deserve to punish myself the way that I do. One of the techniques I’ve used to center myself is to think about all of the good qualities I have. It’s a reminder that I am a sum of all of my parts.

Here are five things I love about who I am:

  1. I’m generous. I would give you the shirt off of my back if you needed it, and would go broke helping a friend. I donate money to good causes, and volunteer when and where I can. I send presents to loved ones for no other reason than to make them smile. My heart is open in this way, and I invite all deserving people in.
  2. I’m accepting. I talk all kinds of shit on this blog about people or things I don’t like, but it’s mostly for humor’s sake. In reality, I’m totally supportive of people doing whatever makes them happy as long as it isn’t hurting anyone. I’ve learned to love people for the things they are, and the things they are not.
  3. I’m trustworthy. I am a keeper of many secrets, some more considerable than others. I take people telling me things in confidence very seriously, and a violation of a person’s faith in me would be an egregious error. There are some secrets that are really only important to the person sharing, but there are others I’d be willing to die for.
  4. I blaze my own trail. I’ve never been conventional in the way I do anything, and I live my life for myself. Sometimes this makes life really hard, but the reward is that once I reach my goals, they’re the goals I wanted. After I got Freshly Pressed, I wrote to my parents to let them know. One of the things my dad wrote back was, “[I] admire that you’re doing your thing in your own time.” I admire that about me too.
  5. I’m funny. My childhood was nothing less than a disaster, but out of that carnage came the ability to laugh at life. I think laughter is one of the greatest things you can give another person, and is a way of sharing a part of yourself while still having fun. I hope that I bring the ha-has on this blog.

I want each of you reading this to do what I’ve done above, and post five things you love about yourself in the comments section below. You don’t need to have inner turmoil, nor do you need to worry about coming across as an egomaniac. This is about reminding ourselves that there is someone very special who lives inside the exterior we show to the outside world.

One day I want to be able to look back on this post and be proud of myself for it. Proud that I wrote it. Proud that I shared it. More than anything, proud that I did those things with people like you.

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Thanks to Jen at The Rollergiraffe for giving me the courage to write this post. She wrote this post which inspired me to write this one. She’s a great writer, and a funny lady so please check her out.

NaNoWriNO Day 14

NaNoWriNO Day 16

165 Responses to “Tears of a Clown”

  1. mmkng 11/16/2012 at 2:37 am #

    *) I love it when people are sincere about themselves, since most of the time and for most of us it’s so difficult to discuss our problems in public.
    So, my five things:
    1. I’m very shy with people until getting to know them – could be seen as a defect, but I really like the feeling of getting a step closer to really enjoying someone and really being yourself.
    2. I become more and more talkative in the same order as above.
    3. I feel accomplished when I something worth spreading the word about, to help somebody, to listen so someone and give good advice, to save a dog or cat or bird or any other animal.
    4. I don’t like fights, arguments, misunderstandings and I get a really miserable feeling when some video about animal or human cruelty pops in front of my eyes.
    5. *)

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:27 am #

      The first part was easy to write, but it was tough to share. I never want to disappoint anyone, and I felt like I might be letting people down by showing them the real me. I underestimated how awesome my readers are.

      I could totally relate to your #1. I’ve often been told I’m standoffish, but it’s not that. I like taking people in, and just listening to them. Once I know them, I feel more comfortable, and begin acting as my true self. I like that you’re similar to me in that way. Shy people represent!

      • mmkng 11/18/2012 at 2:37 am #

        ๐Ÿ™‚ I really think that we should all be able to sometimes at least let go of some self- or society-imposed rules. The truth is, I do feel like walking in my shoes again when doing so. It’s a great relief not to be conditioned by ones demons, by wannabe friends or by society. If everyone did so, we definitely would live in a better world! An utopia, huh?

  2. isawbobdylaninaspeedo 11/16/2012 at 12:51 am #

    This post was wonderful. Not so shocking. I think our ills WE think will shock others…but most people have their own giant bag of ills they carry around so, somehow it all evens out. I know it seems hopeless at times and I feel for you!!! Just keep doing what you do. You are amazing.
    my five things:
    1. I don’t give up easy
    2. I have nice teeth.
    3.I make people laugh at themselves and/or me.
    4. I don’t care if people laugh at me.
    5. I will always see the good in people. Even huge douchebags that just ruined my life…*coughcough* no really, there’s something up with each one of us…and I’m always rooting for that hero. (now put yer cape on and scram!!)

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:23 am #

      You’re so right. We carry things inside us we think will horrify people, and they just say, “Oh, is that it? How can I help?”

      I thought it was cool that you included that you have nice teeth. I bet you smile a lot. Do you? I love smiley people. They make the world a better place.

      • isawbobdylaninaspeedo 11/18/2012 at 7:59 am #

        I do smile a lot…hahahahaha….but I do not take my teeth for granted. I am a teeth noticer person. Its kind of a thing. : ) Hang in there Jen!!! Lots of helpy people in the world are just like you said…’Oh is that it? How can I help?’ perfect.

  3. benzeknees 11/16/2012 at 12:06 am #

    I am a new follower who also suffers from Panic Disorder & Chronic Depression. This started for me approximately 30 years ago & at my worst I was experiencing over 20 panic attacks a day. I finally had to resort to medication to get my chemicals in balance, so I could finally live a somewhat normal life. I know how you feel. Despite the medication, there are times when I still suffer from depression & insommnia. If you need to talk or want some suggestions for how I have coped, please let me know, I’d be happy to help any way I can.
    My five things:
    1) I am a very good parent, even when I was parenting children who were not biologically mine
    2) I am creative & finally taking advantage of some down time to use it
    3) I am generous
    4) I am a great friend
    5) I am a great listener

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:21 am #

      Wow, I cannot imagine experiencing that many panic attacks in a day. How could you possibly manage during that time? I’m so happy you sought help, and now it’s under control. That is no way for a person to live.

      Thank you for offer to help if I ever need it. I’m lucky to have surrounded myself with good people like you.

  4. jdanryan 11/15/2012 at 8:49 pm #

    This was an amazing post. You shared something very deep and personal, and I felt very deeply for you as you opened a vulnerable side and shared with the world something most of us would be too scared to admit to.

    As you requested, my five:

    1) I am patient, especially around people who make me want to scream; even when I start to lose my composure, I still manage to find some way to keep it together

    2) I am deeply analytical, and will examine every situation to find how it works, hoping to make it better

    3) I do what I can to bring justice to those who need it, speaking out on their behalf at a minimum if not doing more

    4) I keep an open mind, free of any possible preconceptions that I can dispense with, so that I may see things as they are and take the facts at hand to make the best possible choices

    6) I don’t take a lot seriously, because the world needs a lot more humor than we allow it to have; the more we stress, the worse we make things

    I wish you all possible peace of mind, and offer whatever I can to help.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:19 am #

      Thank you for also sharing personal things about yourself. Patience is truly a virtue, isn’t it? I’ve had to battle being impatient, and have gotten to the point where it’s under control.

      I also appreciated #2 very much. I tend to be the same way. I often say I’m going inside of my turtle shell to just figure things out. Then I poke my head out and take action.

  5. SocietyRed 11/15/2012 at 7:34 pm #

    Jen. I love you, you fucking tyrant.
    1) I help people
    2) I don’t sugar coat, I say what I think
    3) I am realistic about the future
    4) I write what I feel
    5) I feel

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:17 am #

      I’m pretty new to your blog, but in all of the posts I’ve read, there’s an openness to you that I like. Your list is a reflection of that. I think you get life in a way I don’t. I’m not sure what that means exactly, but it’s always how I’m left feeling when I’m done reading.

      • SocietyRed 11/19/2012 at 10:41 am #

        Thanks Jen, we all have a different set of eyes that’s for sure. I think that’s one of the coolest things about blogfriends; to see the world in little blips through someone’s words…

        • Jen and Tonic 11/19/2012 at 4:10 pm #

          Absolutely! I’m amazed at how often I’m inspired by people I’ve never met, and may never meet.

  6. Brother Jon 11/15/2012 at 7:18 pm #

    So…you win for being the first blogger to bring a tear to my eye. But….it is a tear of happiness, like you get when you watch a movie like “Mr. Hollands Opus”. I took a break from my carnage of a post to read this. I think reading this will make mine better. Thank you. Now, five things I love about myself.

    1. I love that people can tell that I’m genuine.
    2. I love that I can write, and people can read it….and like it.
    3. I love that I’m the best gift giver I know.
    4. I love that I’m man enough to post about my cat.
    5. I love that the how I turned my life around can be an encouragement for other.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:15 am #

      Oh man! I got Brother Jon all teary-eyed? I should have included Kleenex with this post.

      #4, definitely! Cats kick ass, and I think it’s really cool you post about yours. Why shouldn’t you?!

      #5 is one of the reasons I respect you so much as a person. It takes hard word and dedication and self-reflection to do what you did. I also love that you don’t hold on to that baggage, and use it as a way to help others. You have the right attitude about life.

  7. UndercoverL 11/15/2012 at 5:19 pm #

    Sadly, I don’t have the time right now to do the 5 things I love about me. (Ironic.) But I want to give you a hug and say that I absolutely love reading your blog and you make me laugh until I cry regularly. I adore you!

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:12 am #

      Don’t worry about not having the time to comment right now. Life gets busy! Just promise me that you’ll think about those things at some point. You deserve that.

      Thanks for the hugs and nice words ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. speaker7 11/15/2012 at 2:56 pm #

    Jen,
    You amaze me. You are the funniest writer on earth. That is a verifiable fact. And then you write this and take my breath away. Amazing.
    My five:
    1) I love being part of an amazing blogging community
    2) Mr. Speaker7 likes my oddness
    3) I love that I taught my son to want to hear every word sung to the tune of “Car Wash”
    4) I love that I can see a turd for a turd and call the turd on his/her turdness
    5) jen for president.

    • Daan van den Bergh 11/16/2012 at 2:09 am #

      But then could you be vice-president, speaker7? Because that would make me very happy. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:11 am #

      I thought the title of funniest writer on earth went to you? Is this like Miss America when you have to hand it off at the end of the year?

      (1) We love that you’re here
      (2) I bet living with you is awesome
      (3) Your son is now set for any disco he ever attends
      (4) We do love it when you call turds out
      (5) Tonic/Speaker 2016?

  9. Maggie O'C 11/15/2012 at 2:35 pm #

    Nice job Jen. I think I have been suffering from anxiety since I was 5 or 6 but no one knew what it was in 1970. This is why I love prozac. I had a bad spell this summer for no apparent reason, just very sketchy and now it’s gone. Dunno.

    There is something seemingly universal with us funny people, if I may be so bold as to include myself in your company (fuck yeah, we’re from Portland and we’re funny), anyway the crazy helps make you funny somehow. My entire family is hilarious.

    I am proud:
    1. That I live in an honest life.
    2. I am a good mother.
    3. I work hard.
    4. I’m nice (on the surface but then deeper down, not so much but then waaaaayyyy deep down, I’m really nice.)
    5. I have found true love and it is worth the wait.

    Anytime you need a beer, you know where to find me. Well no you don’t but we could meet at Chez Jose or sumpin’ ๐Ÿ™‚
    xoxox
    P.S. Your dad sounds like a good guy.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:09 am #

      You BETTER include yourself in that group, missy.

      I love that your list is so earnest. They’re very simple things on their face, but they take work to get. It’s not always east to stay honest and be a good mom and work hard and be nice and find true love. You did it. Those are definitely things worth being proud of.

      And yes, beer. That’s in our future for sure.

  10. unfetteredbs 11/15/2012 at 1:52 pm #

    this was by far one of the best ideas/posts I have read. You are an amazing person to get all these people to write these wonderful things about themselves(and YOU) Pure awesomeness

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:07 am #

      Thanks so much! Means a lot to me.

      I’m really happy people are posting so many great things. It helps us get to know each other more personally, and also to lighten the mood. Misery loves company, but so does positive energy.

      • unfetteredbs 11/18/2012 at 4:03 am #

        you said it exactly and that is why I loved it so much. It really made my day ๐Ÿ˜‰
        Your blog is awesome. You never know how or why you effect your readers but you do! Thanks for the smiles and the warmth

        • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 1:36 pm #

          Thank you for being a part of it. It really does mean a lot to me.

  11. Miss Snarky Pants 11/15/2012 at 1:24 pm #

    Thanks for this post. I think it’s important to share this bit of yourself with your readers. Many people don’t realize that lurking behind the humor, there is often despair. Though I don’t get down too often, depression does affect some of my family members. Many people think to themselves, “That chick just needs to snap out of it,” but it’s not that easy. If it was, there’d be no mental illness in the world.

    Though my self-deprecating manner does not permit me to list my many positive attributes (all of which are buried somewhere beneath a few cases of wine and several pairs of double digit stretch jeans), I want you to know that, in my humble opinion, you and your blog make the world a better, brighter and funnier place.

    xoxo

    Miss Snarky Pants

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:05 am #

      Humor is definitely a coping mechanism, and I wonder how many funny people are hiding behind the despair as you put it. I wouldn’t trade my sense of humor for the world (it makes life more fun!) but I do need to manage the things that helped me get it.

      I hope you do take time to think about all of the wonderful things that you are. You have such a unique way of looking at the world, and you let us laugh at it with you. That’s something to be proud of right there.

  12. Human In Recovery 11/15/2012 at 12:26 pm #

    Jen,
    Kudos and much to be proud of.

    Now for the more difficult thing:
    1. I am proud of my blog: the writing I do and the down and dirty hard work of facing my truths.
    2. I am proud that despite the lies that live in my brain I am not giving up or failing at living my life.
    3. I am proud that I have made it this far in life that I have an opportunity to have relationships with my adult children, no matter how difficult they may be.
    4. I am proud that I am doing better and becoming better as a parent to my pre-school daughter.
    5. I am proud that I have not given up on anyone in my life.

    Wow, that was easier than I thought it would be. Thanks for the challenge.

    Be well,
    Kina

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:03 am #

      YAY for being easier than you thought!

      The things you’ve listed show me you’ve got a fighting spirit. That’s incredibly admirable, and something I’ve been trying to work on. It takes a lot to say, “This is shitty, but I’ve got this.”

  13. rollergiraffe 11/15/2012 at 12:25 pm #

    Ms. Tonic, this is amazing. You are amazing, and i hope you internalize all those good things you wrote about yourself. Anxiety and depression are the most dysfunctional couple that I know and I am sorry that you are sucked into their vortex too, but aren’t we fortunate to at least have a community where we can write our way out? So much love your way.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 2:01 am #

      We are most fortunate for this community. I started this blog for very superficial reasons, and have gotten more out of it than I ever could have expected.

      Thanks again for giving me the courage to write this. You are awesomesauce.

  14. trjensen 11/15/2012 at 12:02 pm #

    Jen you are amazing and so so open and it has takken some of us much longer to get to that point in our lives. I can absolutely relate to the depression and anxiety. I have had issues with anxiety/depression since I was eight and it has become part of who I am. There are positives that come out of these struggles. We learn to be stronger. We learn how to make ourselves happy. We understand ourselves. Anxiety goes hand in hand with this sort of self-obsession that can help us become better versions of ourselves. We are more inclined to dissect our behavior and work on things that we’d like to change.

    You actually remind me of a much funnier version of myself. Le CLown was right. You give so much love and expect so little in return. That is rare and a real reason to be proud of yourself. You are an outstanding example of what a human should be my dear. I am sending you all my love your way. xoxo Teri

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 1:59 am #

      I’ve struggled with it since that age as well! It’s incredible to think about someone that young experiencing something so weighty. Sometimes I think about how I made it through life by the skin of my teeth.

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I’m really happy to have met you here. You’ve got an edgier tone to your humor that I’ve been working towards. We all seek inspiration from each other it seems.

      • trjensen 11/18/2012 at 12:09 pm #

        When you are as young as we were when started experiencing what we have it becomes part of how our lives are. It is our normal. I can relate to the smiling through the pain too. I honestly believe that regardless of how we feel during our low points we are incredibly strong. We manage to function (sometimes just barely) no matter what. We have also found a creative release that I have found very beneficial to my emotional well being. When my son was around ten, I was watching The Aviator. My son, sat down and watched it for a few minutes then asked, “What is wrong with that man?” I explained that he had anxiety and was obsessive complusive. He said, “That is what is wrong with you.” I am not nearly that bad but something always reminds me. But we get through it and we always will. Shit! If we can make it through our teens dealing with anxiety and depression we can make it through anything. To me, that was when I struggled the most.

        You are incredibly brave and strong my friend. And thank you for being so open.

  15. Storkhunter 11/15/2012 at 11:42 am #

    Jen, this post really made me think. So far I have only seen the ha-ha side of you and it’s really ha-ha. You are definitely one of my favourite bloggers. Reading this shows how there’s so much more to a person. You never know what’s going on in someone’s life. Which brings me to my list.

    1. I am very non-judgemental. Nobody knows everything there is to know about another person. Who are we to decide what is the right way for someone else to go about their lives.
    2. I am a very positive person. I have had more shit thrown at me in my life than the walls of a monkey’s cage. Yet I manage to get myself out of bed in the morning, put on a smile and have a laugh. And you know what, most of the time I don’t have to fake the smile.
    3. I am intelligent. Okay, so this is a little braggy maybe, but I do like my intelligence. I like it that I get obscure references is books and/or magazines and I like that when I get together with friends I am referred to as ‘the clever one.’
    4. I am a good wife and mother. I’ve had ups and downs in my marriage and with the kid, but I’ve been there for my husband and I love my kid to death. Wouldn’t change him for the world
    5. I am funny. I keep people entertained with my writing and my story. It is fortunate for others that I have the balance and co-ordination of a gorilla so I end up with loads of hilarious tales to share.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 1:57 am #

      I debated about whether or not to write this. I know people come to my blog to read humorous stuff, but that’s not who I am all the time. As nice as it would be to be all sunshine and rainbows, it’s just not true. I felt like being REALLY honest for once.

      From reading your blog, I knew all of those things about you. You write really openly and authentically, and I like that about you. Don’t ever change.

      Also, good job again on your “opening up” post.

  16. bringmetheheadofdaviddixon 11/15/2012 at 11:39 am #

    I like your honesty here and so maybe I should play along for once.

    1. Meditation is like medicine to me. It’s nothing exotic, it’s available to everyone.
    2. I would always rather be outside.
    3. I don’t feel natural communicating via virtual space. I might be less awkward in the real world. I said “might”.
    4. I love the movie “Nothing but a Man”.
    5. I also love this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sCQfTNOC5aE

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 1:55 am #

      I like your style, very “unplugged” in a way. I’d love to get more into meditation, but I can’t seem to quiet my mind enough. I do appreciate that it’s accessible to anyone, anywhere at anytime. And yes, outside is always better. Fresh air is very healing for me.

      Thanks for playing along ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Combat Babe 11/15/2012 at 11:03 am #

    I don’t know how I found your Facebook before your Blog, but I totally fell for you even with just the statuses. Things about myself:

    1- I am not just honest, I am brutally honest. Some people don’t like it and I don’t blame them because everyone of us sometimes only wants to hear what we want to hear. I’m not mean, I just will tell you exactly how I feel or think about something. Sometimes it’s asked for and sometimes I just give it. But I accept that about me.

    2- I will still love you if you do/are doing something that goes against my grain. If you are in love with a person whom I think is bad for you I will not fault you, but I will not let you complain or talk about them to me. It’s your bed, you lie in it. If you are stripping or selling yourself, I will whole-heartedly disapprove, but you’ll still be my friend. You may drive me bat shit crazy, but my love is unconditional.

    3- I put others before myself always. Most see this as a fault if they do it, too. I don’t. I may get hurt, I may get burned, but I survive and if I can help you or try to help when you don’t want it, I will.

    4- I have an internal pretentiousness. It may be considered egocentric, I try not to show it. I can spot it quickly in others and it will actually turn me off about them, one of those catch 22s. I try to be humble, but I know I am intelligent. I can read people easily, I can advise people with a finesse and will only lack confidence when I come across something I don’t know or I hit an anxiety/depression spell.

    5- I have Bipolar 1 Disorder. This doesn’t mean I don’t envy those who are not Bipolar, believe me I do. But I look at my disorder as a gift and I think it gives me more compassion towards others. I’ve gone full blown psychotic twice from mania and any kind of negative human experience that others are going through or have already went through, I want to reach out and hold their hand. Metaphorically and with words because I am a weirdo about touching and hugging and the like.

    If this sounds pretentious–I’m not sorry. xo

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I can relate to the teeth brushing thing.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/16/2012 at 1:49 am #

      Not pretentious at all! I dated someone for a considerable length of time who was brutally honest like you are. It really took me awhile to get adjusted to someone just saying whatever it was they were thinking, but I admire and appreciate it now. You never have to guess where you stand with that person.

      I’d also guess you’re a great friend based on #2. Sometimes people get wrapped up in the “I hate this about you” part of a friendship. I know I used to.

      Funny that you found my facebook before my blog! However you got here, I’m happy you did.

  18. Ashley Austrew 11/15/2012 at 10:52 am #

    “Iโ€™ve been told several times, ‘Youโ€™re the happiest person I know. Whatโ€™s your secret?’ My secret is that Iโ€™m a fucking wreck on the inside.” Yes.

    Yes to this whole post. You said it better than I’ve ever been able to.

    Here’s my list:

    1. I’m a good mom.
    2. I’m a good wife.
    3. I’m a good writer.
    4. I’m funny.
    5. I thoughtful and I try hard.

    Oh, also, I have really great blogging friends like Emily who introduce me to all sorts of other great blogs like this one ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Ashley Austrew 11/15/2012 at 10:53 am #

      I’m* thoughtful, though apparently not a good typist.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/16/2012 at 1:46 am #

      Power to the blogosphere for bringing us all together! I’m glad to see so many people, like yourself, saying they’re good moms. I think mothers have a tendency to be too hard on themselves. To see people recognizing how good they are makes me happy.

  19. Daan van den Bergh 11/15/2012 at 10:47 am #

    Well, the 5 qualities you’ve listed above are completely similar to mine, so this comment is pretty boring.

    But I hear you, bro – erm… Sister. The reason why I’m such a Happy Flappy all the time, is because of my disastrous past.

    I don’t know where this quote is from, but it suits your post (especially the title):

    “That’s Life,” said the Clown and drew a smile on his face.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/16/2012 at 1:44 am #

      OH! Great quote! It’s so true, isn’t it?

      And yes, our pasts can help make us even stronger than before. I’m glad you’ve gotten to that place.

      • Daan van den Bergh 11/16/2012 at 2:06 am #

        Yeah, well, it’s a loose translation from Dutch. I found the actual English translation and posted it here.

        Thank your for sharing your story. I respect you for it.

  20. Carrie Rubin 11/15/2012 at 10:18 am #

    What a wonderful post. I would be remiss if I didn’t respond, so here goes:
    1. I’m a hard-worker.
    2. I’m raising great kids.
    3. I picked a wonderful husband.
    4. I’m finally following my heart.
    5. I try to follow the Golden Rule every day.

    I admire your honesty in this post, and I think you made us all feel a little bit better about ourselves. And I hope you feel the same way as well, because I think you are all those things you listed and more!

    • Jen and Tonic 11/16/2012 at 1:43 am #

      Thanks Carrie!

      Really loved your list. I see people increasingly forgetting the Golden Rule, and was really happy to see it listed. Being nice never goes out of style.

  21. Ericka @ Creative Liar 11/15/2012 at 10:10 am #

    Jen, I think I’ve found a blogging soul mate in you. I know where you’re coming from, that smile you give people so they have no clue the massacre inside your own head. I love the five things you’ve listed and can see them in myself, too. Sometimes I have to do that, list the good things about me and my life. But sometimes, I just wish I didn’t have to remind myself so often.

    Really beautifully written.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/16/2012 at 1:40 am #

      *BIG HUGS* for blogging soulmates. And yeah, having to give yourself those reminders is such a pain in the ass. Sometimes I get so moody and default to, “I wish I was normal.” Then I wonder if that would mean losing my ability to write, or my sense of humor or extreme silliness. Part of what makes me crazy is also what helps me in a way. I try to remind myself of that too.

  22. becca3416 11/15/2012 at 10:07 am #

    Jen, you are one of my FAVORITE ha-ha bringers. I can always expect to laugh when I come to your posts. Even when I am not laughing, like for this one, I am enjoying getting to know you. As requested:

    1. I am proud that I have faced so many fears this year
    2. I love that I can make people laugh
    3. I genuinely LIKE people in a world where it seems that the opposite is more common
    4. I consider myself a little bit of a jack of all trades… or I aspire to be, and that is cool
    5. I can imitate a pig snort flawlessly. It trips people out.

    Thank you.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/18/2012 at 1:52 am #

      I love your #3! Seriously, LOVE it. Do you know how rare you are? You’re like a white tiger, only less hairy and won’t try to eat me for lunch.

      Also, my mom can do a really scary good pig snort. I wish I could. I would bust that out on dates. Or in work meetings. Or on the bus for no reason.

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