My good mood is a delicate creature. Like a butterfly wing or a dandelion clock it can be damaged by the gentlest of touches. My mood holds my day on a gossamer thread, like a web holding a spider. It can endure the breezes that blow through it, causing it to stretch a little out of shape, before springing back to its original form. But when once it becomes entwined with something stronger and more powerful, it is destroyed and it takes all that I have to respin it before the day draws to its conclusion.
Oh how poetic we seem to be feeling today! I trust you will indulge me, if only for a paragraph. However, even though my syntax is more lyrical than of late, the point it still well made. My good mood can be shattered as easily as fine bone china.
When the sun shines I am generally happy. It’s a fairly safe rule of thumb. If you want a positive response out of me then ask me when the skies are blue and you are much more likely to get the result that you seek. If I open my curtains and there is the prospect of a fine day in store then I skip through my household’s morning routine with a smile. A dropped cereal box? No matter. A knocked over milk jug? Well. It’s only milk. Lost homework? It must be here somewhere – let’s look together.
But as the day wears on, things balance on a slightly less even keel. Someone makes a comment that troubles me in the playground – no harm intended but in it goes, worming its way into my mood. I question my actions, replaying scenes in my head. Did I upset someone, speak out of turn without intention? Has my child done something to theirs?
I shrug the comment off knowing that I have overemphasized its importance but it leaves a slightly sour taste, the beginnings of a knot inside me. From this point my mood could go almost anywhere. A shop assistant continues to talk to her friend whilst serving me. What do I care? I have no need for small talk but with my slightly damaged self esteem I feel vulnerable. Their rudeness makes me angry. I say thank you pointedly as I leave.
And as time ticks on I am swept up in a tsunami of microscopic changes, some triggered by external forces like the shop assistant, some brought about by the voices in my head that keep me busy all day long. I am sure that I never used to be aware of so many changes in my mood. As with most things, I suspect it is a result of spending the bulk of my day by myself. I notice things and then analyse them beyond what is reasonable because I can.
I’m sure my moods used to last for longer periods than they do now. If I got up happy then that was how I went to bed. I felt grumpy then I accepted that that would be the state of affairs until something distracted me from it or I forgot it in my sleep. Now if I feel the same from one hour to the next it’s unusual. Still, looking for the positive as I am wont to do, it’s never boring. So far today I have been confident, happy, lonely, guilt ridden, angry, sad and a technicoloured rainbow of shades in between and it’s only half past two. Never a dull moment.
I suspect that most people have neither the opportunity nor the inclination to consider this balance but I, constantly on the lookout for ideas for my jottings, have finely tuned antennae and monitor the changes with interest. I wonder what the next hour will bring!