Three Ordinary Things That Bring Me Joy

My cats. It feels cringy for a childless millennial to dote on their furbabies, but it’s true. I’m not even sure my cats are ordinary because they’re both two totally different kinds of weird.

Kona is kitten-sized. She has been since I adopted her when she was supposedly about eight months old. Her reflexes are really slow, and aside from being told she was the runt of her litter and may have some vague issues, I’m not really sure why (though they have been improving the more she plays with Josh.) Now she has no teeth. She went to the vet for dental work and while they cleaned some of them most of them had to go. Somehow her personality shines through even more with her newfound lack of teeth, and she kind of looks more hilarious than ever in the most adorable way.

Maui is more than three times the size of Kona, which is concerning I suppose but not surprising where food is basically his whole life. He has diabetes, and where I somehow was never that close to him before his diagnosis taking care of his blood glucose testing and insulin shots somehow brought us closer together and now I’m a helicopter parent to him. Hopefully, diabetes is all he has. During the last trip to his specialist, which of course has to cost more than I make in a week, we added an IGF test to his bloodwork panel to check for acromegaly, a barely treatable tumor on the pituitary gland. We’re still waiting for the results. He brings me joy, but he also brings me intense amounts of stress.

Kona and Maui

Sunny days. Going outside can turn my whole mood around, well, when it’s warm anyway. I’m sure every New Englander has some form of seasonal depression, and while it’s changed a bit over the years, it’s still there. I guess I didn’t necessarily have it as a kid, at least not consciously, though I wouldn’t be surprised if something was buried deep in there.

In my 20s, seasonal depression manifested itself through my boredom when everything would seemingly shut down across the city despite the fact that people have lived here for hundreds of years and would probably go out and do things in the cold if there were actually more things to do. In my 30s, so far at least, it just feels like it drains my energy. If my mood is off, or I just need a change of scenery, especially now that I work from home, I’d love to go for a hike or sit in front of the ocean, but in the winter I can’t.*

*I know I can. I know I can dress warmer and still go outside, but I don’t want to. The cold is uncomfortable and I’d rather just complain about it. So if you’re heading to the comments to tell me to dress warmer and still go for a hike, no need to waste your time.

Anything cozy. This might sound silly, but I wasn’t sure how else to narrow it down. I’m thinking along the lines of warm blankets, a hot cup of tea, comfort food, and candles….I think I am generally not good at getting myself to relax, at least consciously. I tend to get stressed out and just keep working through it, I guess, and at least surrounding myself with cozy vibes helps when I can’t get myself to actually take a break. I don’t know what that’s saying that my response to stress is to work more, but yea….

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