Melancholia vs. hope

Photo by Sravan Chandran on

Hi friends, 

I meant to write this post a couple of days ago, when I woke up feeling down and melancholic and lonely and in need of a bit of hope. 

It’s fall here (as in most of the Northern hemisphere) and I’ve finally had a few days to settle down and feel lonely in my new apartment-town-country. This is the first time in years that I am dealing with such intense change and emotions without a crutch OR a supportive boyfriend to “help” me get through it all. Now it’s just me and my own little internal resources 😉

The other morning, I was staring out the window, admiring the view and feeling sad that I have no one here to enjoy it with—and I noticed the negative thought patterns begin to creep up. [OH WOE IS ME AND OH MY TRAGIC DEATH BY BEING-EATEN-BY-MY-CATS, and so on] Whenever I experience a wave of sadness/melancholy, I still have a survival instinct kick in, where I push it away and worry that depression is back to steal the show. I go into all or nothing mode, and give into all kinds of fallacious reasoning, making grand conclusions about worst case scenarios, dying alone, antidepressants, the misery of existence, etc.

But this time, something cute happened (some would call this a synchronicity) that shocked me out of my misery-loop and made me smile, even laugh a bit. It burst my bubble of unhelpful thought patterns and redirected my attention, away from myself and out towards the world. It gave me hope in a small, symbolic way.

All it was, was that as soon as I had began to go into “no one will ever love/hire me” mode, a white dove flew over the rooftops in front of me, then veered my way and flew straight at me, then above my head, and made a big circular swooping movement, before flying back in front of me with a trail of other, grey (ordinary lol) pigeons following behind it. Or her. [I want to call it a her 🙂 ] She was leading them, that white one.

I’m not a big fan of fallacious reasoning, having studied and taught philosophy for most of my adult life. But in the moment, I let all that intellectual snobbism go, and I said “ok universe, I choose to notice the awesome badass white dove leading the way and I will not give in to the self-deprecating/self-pitying thought loops. Someone will love me and someone will hire me and life has many great things in store for me, and above all, right here right now, I LOVE ME, thank you. I will not give in to despair. I will follow the white dove and be patient.” And I closed the window.

So now I’m trying to be more gentle and patient with myself: It’s been 3 days in a city where I don’t know anyone, in the middle of a pandemic, with a dissertation defense to prepare for. It’s ok to not have a giant group of friends and an awesome job yet.

Everything in its own time. 


Big hugs to everyone and YAY UNCERTAINTY 🙂

Xxx Anne

Published by nomorebeer

Learning how sobriety helps you ENJOY life.

20 thoughts on “Melancholia vs. hope

  1. I sort of believe in things like that. You’re going to think I’m nuts but a single magpie followed me round for a while during a bad period. As soon as I saw 2 more regularly I knew the bad period was ending. Oh god I do sound nuts dont I?


    1. hahaha whoaaaaa spooky 😉 no, I don’t think you’re nuts 🙂 I think that either 1) birds have a super intelligence and can sense all kinds of stuff or 2) we make meaning of the world and as long as it helps us navigate our way through life, it doesn’t matter what we see, as long as it makes sense to us 🙂 hehehe xxx Anne


  2. Love this Anne! If you don’t want to believe in the signs thing (though I think I do though my science brain says don’t be silly!) I think it’s that in that moment you connected with nature and all that is bigger than us so could let your thoughts go – it might have been a colony of ants or a blossom or anything ( though the dove is cooler by far!) – you’ve been doing the work and training with your yoga and sobriety and at a time of maximum stress like the move, and being near your mum again and the PhD you were able to manage it – bloody brilliant! 👏👏👏💞💞💞

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You’ll do the first no probs I’m sure – the 2nd is tough in this climate but fingers crossed for you and maybe France not as bad as uk? – we are going so down the pan it would be comical if it wasn’t actually so bad 💞💞

        Liked by 2 people

  3. So glad you are choosing hope, and relying on your own internal resources. You will probably realize you have an abundance of resources with, and are way more courageous, strong and resilient than you’ve given yourself credit for. Love and light to you! 💕

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh Anne, that last paragraph made me smile. 3 days and so much going on, yet we expect huge things for ourselves and panic when they aren’t happening. You are doing brilliantly. It will settle and remember the world at the moment is not easy to navigate anyway. As Jim said, those are not rational thoughts and you stopped them from taking hold. I’m sorry you feel lonely right now though and I’m sending virtual hugs 🤗 to you lovely friend xx ❤️🤗💕


  5. Good for you choosing the other path! Keep choosing it, and be kind to yourself when you feel low. 🤗 This is all normal for your situation. It is all going to work out for you. I’m certain of it. You’re awesome. ❤️❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I’ve been working hard on ACCEPTING that it’s ok to feel sad in this situation, and that it doesn’t necessarily mean there is “something wrong” with me 🙂 Thank you for the reminder and the kind words Leafy 🙂 ❤ xxx Anne

      Liked by 2 people

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