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The gift of rain... Saturday November 9, 2013

This title, from a book I read recently, got me thinking. I have always loved rain from my earliest memories. Something about being warm and secure looking out though the window with raindrops splattering in ever changing patterns. That little reminder seemed to grow again an appreciation of the ordinary aspects of my life that had faded.

I find a similar thing happens when I flip through the Moodscope cards. Cards like 'proud' or 'enthusiastic'. By simply noticing again that I have much to be enthusiastic and proud of seems to grow my appreciation of my mood and increase a sense of balance. Even noticing whether I am jittery or distressed also seems to bring a feeling of the full spectrum of 'the frailty of being human'.

Strangely comforting and enriching. Can even feel like something of a gift.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment on our Blogspot:

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The Entertrainer Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 8:34am

Thanks Adrian. I think the cards pull us back into the present - a gift indeed. I know not all Moodscopers are SciFi fans but I'm sure we all know about Mr Spock. There's a charming scene where Spock's human mother simply asks, "How are you feeling?" That's such a valuable question - and the cards do that for us.
I do believe in the power of words - something borne about by Malcolm Gladwell in "The Tipping Point". In one of the experiments quoted, he highlights the impact of negative words and positive words on the behaviour of New York students. Basically, being exposed to positive words peripherally led to them being tolerant and well mannered when deliberately messed about by the experimenters.
Once I've got my blue card readings, I like to finish on a red to access all the positive associations with the red card words - just like the happy associations I too have with rain...

Anonymous Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 9:09am

Very Sweet. Very Soft.

Julia Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 9:39am

I have come to the conclusion that these little evocative things, memories,feelings, like the smell of wood smoke in the evening air, the autumn leaves and the first rush of cold air of the year which meant we could wear our winter coats and boots... there will be more I shall remember during today...can be so elusive in our busy lives. It's difficult to conjure up these feelings. I am not sure why this should be so but it could be because we don't allow ourselves time just to stand and stare. As we get older perhaps our priorities change. We look after people, children, elderly parents, and are seldom on our own doing nothing which is the time when such pleasant sensations come to us. Of course there are some people who live alone and wish for more company and obviously there is a balance to be struck but for me, your blog Adrian has got me thinking that I need a day at least to myself just to do nothing in particular. Maybe then I will smell the air and see the leaves and get back those earlier memories which were so comforting. I agree with you too Lex about the cards.

Anonymous Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 10:16am

You are so right Julia about how such evocative "mindful" moments are so elusive in our busy lives - and I identify only too clearly with the whirlwind of having to look after others - for me this was at the expense of my own health.
It has taken breast cancer (all clear now) and a chronic fatiguing medical condition (ongoing) to teach me the absolute necessity of looking after myself SO THAT I can continue to look after others (well on my good days anyway).
I found it all too easy to talk about looking after oneself first, but I never learnt the lesson (a touch of the 21st century "superwoman" syndrome maybe).
It has been forced on me and I have to work every day at
1. managing limited energy reserves (do I do the washing or the washing up? I can't do both)
2. focussing every day on the positive and
3. not being overcome by feelings of anger and despair and grief for not being the healthy, active, busy, sociable woman I was 3 years ago.
It is a daily battle and it makes me cry now as I type and everytime I compare myself now to then.

Yoga has been hugely helpful in learning to focus on the positive and on being in the present moment.
Also Moodscope;
tracking my mood,
being able to record on the graph a note explaining each day's score,
the daily emails with so many nuggets of wisdom,
and perhaps most importantly the reminder that I am not alone.

So a HUGE thank-you from the bottom of my heart to this wonderful Moodscope community which has accompanied me on this difficult journey for the past 2 years;

Jon, if you are reading this, thank-you for creating Moodscope.


Julia Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 10:53am

Yes Frankie, I agree with all you say. I am so sorry you have had breast cancer to deal with. You sound very courageous. I am sure you don't feel courageous much of the time though. You are so right that if we don't look after ourselves we won't be in a position to look after anyone else. It seems you are a selfless person like so many Moodscopers. It also seems sometimes, much of the time, that unfair things happen to us nice people but we will win in the end. I think you and I are both getting there but for you with your breast cancer and chronic fatigue and me for other reasons (including fatigue), it's been (and I guess still is) rather a long hard struggle hasn't it? Thank you for writing.

Anonymous Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 11:19am

Thank-you Julia for your kind words. No I don't feel courageous though people say I am; and yes it is a long hard struggle - with the breast cancer I found that I could say "why not me?" and I did cope well;
with the fatigue condition however I have to work so hard at not saying "why me?" I have no idea why I can't adopt the same acceptance as I did with the cancer - and my GP warned me "don't try and fight this (fatigue) because it will win" - yet I do - fight it, resent it, despair ... the struggle is a daily one - and the temptations to wallow in "poor me" feelings and to refer constantly to it in order to gain people's sympathy are huge. The condition is "invisible" since with careful planning I can do most things, just one at a time and interspersed with rests. Perhaps once I have fully learnt the art of mindfulness and of counting my blessings and of putting myself first - nurturing myself even, perhaps then life will become easier. At the moment however I feel that I am a very slow learner and that I keep failing the tests! Thank-you Julia for replying to me - this post has helped me to articulate my feelings for the first time in recent weeks . Maybe with your help I have just made another (possibly significant) step on the learning curve ... Thank-you. Frankie

Julia Sat, Nov 9th 2013 @ 12:47pm

If only people would give us the same sort of sympathy they would give to us if we had a physical illness. Fatigue, depression can often be hidden, so on top of feeling awful, we bear the added burden of trying to keep how we feel from others. This has been discussed here on this site a few times. No doubt when you had breast cancer (thankfully gone now), you received the care and love you deserved. It may even have helped the recovery. I am not sure how we with mental health issues fatigue etc will ever extract the same level of care and sympathy from those who have never experienced it. I am slightly irritated I have to say reading reports of top level managers in banking, top city lawyers, MPs etc who have experienced depression, now speaking out about their problems as if it was acceptable somehow for them but us lesser mortals have had to suffer in silence for years and years. However any positive publicity must be good for us. Don't worry about replying Frankie. I know you are there with me/us!

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