I can be at the happiest place on earth (and I was) and still be miserable. There I was surrounded by Mickey and all his friends only to feel like a terrible parent because I couldn’t find five matching souvenirs. That’s right, I wanted five souvenirs that matched and would last a while so the kids would have something shared to remember the whole affair by. Never mind that they’d done the whole vacation together and would have a lifetime of memories or that they’d spent hours on end racing together to find the silly collectible pins, that meant nothing to my bipolar brain. It was solely focused on finding these damn souvenirs.
I latched onto beach towels! Everyone used those and sometimes for years. Perfect! Now, I did finally find five matching beach towels but it took me nearly two hours to finally find them. And the whole time I felt miserable for not…well for not “something”. And there is always a “something” when I’m in that head space. But, I also felt excited for what was effectively a treasure hunt. I had a goal, something I could achieve, and I am nothing if not goal oriented. By the way, this being up and down at the same time? It’s not uncommon for me and it’s called being in a “mixed state”, something I am all too familiar with. Anyway, once I found them I felt a short but exhilarating high, as though I had reached a long sought after target, even though it was a small and recent one. Then, just as suddenly as it has appeared, my failure was gone and the adventurous vacation continued, with a smile on my face and a bag of towels on my arm.
And the damn towels? Well they mostly prompted arguments over which towel was whose at the pool and these days are strewn between houses or lost altogether. Silly towels.