Life is Hard, and Flossing Won’t Help

This blog is called Jess Witkins’s Happiness Project. You probably come here for tips on happiness, or to laugh at the stupid things I do in attempt to achieve it, thereby making yourself feel better about life. That is fine.

But sometimes, I’m not happy.


Sometimes I’m pissed off or stressed out or emotionally unstable. Often when I’m hungry. Which is why my fiance thinks I need this shirt…

I think my writer pal, Myndi Shafer, said it best:

Life is fucking hard.

Myndi wrote an honest blog post about feeling low in life, and I’m so glad she did, because I needed to hear that I wasn’t alone.

I’m known for being a really positive person and finding the humor in situations out of one’s control. But recently, it feels like everything is out of control. Which is scary because I’m a control freak!

smother you while sleeping

We all go through chapters in our lives where things are out of balance or in transition. I just happen to be dealing with a few big ones all at once.

I don’t know about you guys, but I seem to be placing my coping skills in the weirdest of places too. For example, I feel like I have no control over the things in my life, so I’ve taken to controlling my fiance’s. Specifically, his healthcare.

Here are things I said in the last week that I never thought I would say. Ever.

“You should floss tonight. We ate poppyseeds.”

-“Did you take more echincea? You really should if your throat is sore.”

-“I told you NOT TO BLOW YOUR NOSE SO HARD! You’re inflaming your nasal passages! God!”

Bless his congested little heart for putting up with me.

I know things will get better. My brain cells tell me this is so. But my soul is still unsure and spends way too much time worrying.

Know what I mean?

P.S. Free vitamins and neti pots all around.

50 responses

  1. Oh no, I’m sorry to hear you are feeling overwhelmed and stressed. Wedding planning will do that to you. Not sure if it’s just that, or the book and other stuff as well, but I’m sure it’s not helping. Just relax and breathe. And if that doesn’t help . . . drink. It always works for me. πŸ˜‰

    Seriously, though, I know how you feel. My life does this sort of roller coaster ride of peaks and valleys as well. I’m sorry you are in a valley, but am sure you will start to climb out soon. Let me know if you need to talk. I’m here for you if you do. HUGS.

    1. Thanks Misty! I can’t wait for the roller coaster to head back back up. I definitely had a glass of wine or two this weekend.

  2. Sometimes it boils down to taking one hour at a time, even one minute at a time. And ask yourself if the thing you’re worrying about will matter five or 10 years from now. We can get fritzed out over things that really don’t matter, and we all do it now and then. Like Misty said, relax and breathe! (Or drink instead!) πŸ™‚

    1. That’s a good way to think about it. Right now a lot of the things will matter but I will try not to focus on the little things.

  3. It’s the end of a loooooooooong winter in the great white north. Oh wait. That’s Canada. The sunshine will soon melt the blues.
    You are showing him you care, but just so you know, I’ve been telling my husband not to blow so hard and he still ignores me after 26 years!

    1. But does he clean his facial hair off your counter?

      1. How does it get there? Euw!!!!

        1. From shaving his beard. It’s always everywhere….

          *looks behind shoulder*

          1. Good luck with that! πŸ™‚

  4. So sorry, Jess! 😦 There really is something in this (frigid) air that is causing havoc in everyone’s lives! Every other post I read lately is someone feeling very low (including myself) and overwhelmed. NO ME GUSTA!

    You are right about the control thing. When we lose all control of what is happening to us, we look for something that we CAN control in order to feel better. In your defense, poppy seeds DO get stuck in our teeth and it’s a good idea to floss. πŸ™‚ It sounds like your wonderful fiancΓ© is very forgiving and ‘gets’ it. Hang in there!

    1. I’m so glad I have the WANAs! Sorry to hear you’re in the pits too. 😦

  5. (1) I TOTALLY need that t-shirt, too. I have an evil alter-ego that comes out when I’m hungry. She makes children cry, just for fun.

    (2) The beard-trimming meme? Yes.

    (3) Hang in there, love. You are most definitely not alone. It’s hard for us cheerful personalities to admit when we’re feeling low, but I think it’s a healthy thing to do – to verbally acknowledge that sometimes life hurts and sucks. Even when we have good things going on, life can still hurt and suck.

    Big hugs, friend. ❀

    1. 1) We can both wear that tshirt.
      2) I made that meme and you may borrow it. I know you have a hairy man too. πŸ˜‰
      3) Thanks for that reminder. I know I’m someone who feels better after talking but I’m so guarded with who I share. Thanks for the gentle push Myndi.

  6. When I feel like this I hid by reading, usually smut, and snipping at people who try and talk to me, poor children. Hope you get out of your funk soon. πŸ™‚

    1. LOL Alica that’s really funny. I may need to get myself a new book. Something saucy. πŸ˜‰

  7. I thought you wrote, “free vitamins and need pot.” Which would have been understandable, given the circumstances. And I could probably help with that, seeing as how it’s legal in this state. But that’s another story.

    You are not alone. Many people go through periods like this in their lives. Been there, done that myself. Like you, I’m an optimist who is pretty much always “up” so being “down” came as an unwelcome surprise. But I persevered and felt better soon enough. I’m sure you will, too. Hang in there and be strong!

    1. Thanks Mark. I could totally go for a voodoo donut and THOSE are legal in your state too.

      I hope your transition of moving goes well so you only have to deal with a little bit of chaos at a time. Good luck unpacking!

  8. If flossing’s not enough, try a Water Pik! πŸ˜‰

    1. My dad has one. They look scary.

  9. I do know what you mean. It will pass. Everyone feels a bit down and not in control from time to time. You are definitely not alone. Bet ya you’ll be feeling a lot better by this time next week.

    1. I hope you’re right. Thanks for the virtual “buck up” Emma. Hope all is well with you!

  10. You are the third person in the last 24 hours whose admitted that their life is sucky right now. And from the comments, there are many more such folks out there.

    When I was a therapist, I had a window into many people’s lives at one time. I saw a pattern. About once a year (not the same time of year though), EVERYBODY seemed to be having a hard time with something or other all at once. And not just the stuff that they had come into therapy to deal with. Other crap, usually that they had no control over, was going on. My friends and family would often have negative stuff going on as well.

    I know it sounds a little woo-woo but I came to the conclusion that sometimes things are just off kilter in the universe. We have to tie a knot in our rope and hang on; it does stabilize again eventually.

    1. I’m hanging on as best I can.

      I totally believe things like full moons and such can affect our moods. This winter has been extremely rough so that may be part of it too. Good thing spring is on its way.

  11. I never heard any of this except the first four lines, but I always thought it contained great wisdom. Accepting things we can’t control is necessary to our sanity.

    God grant me the serenity
    to accept the things I cannot change;
    courage to change the things I can;
    and wisdom to know the difference.

    Living one day at a time;
    Enjoying one moment at a time;
    Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
    Taking, as He did, this sinful world
    as it is, not as I would have it;
    Trusting that He will make all things right
    if I surrender to His Will;
    That I may be reasonably happy in this life
    and supremely happy with Him
    Forever in the next.

    1. Thank you David. I appreciate your prayers. πŸ™‚

  12. Jess, after 25 years of marriage and three boys, I’m convinced that men are 90% body hair. I have a swiffer and clorox wipes on every level. But they do put the seat down, bless their hearts.

    That bit of unsolicited info aside, I understand the stress that optimistically-oriented people feel to ALWAYS express the positive. I’m like that, too. It can be exhausting if you’re not feeling that way at the time.

    Thanks for trusting us with you feelings, and hang in there. It will get better! Hugs. xo

    1. The hair is endless!

      Kathy, thank you for sharing with me that you’ve been there too and acknowledging that it’s ok to share these tough times. I’m truly lucky to have WANA friends. And if you care to take a stroll down memory lane with me, I was reading an old post of mine from 2012 and I referenced the Warrior Writers. Fun to read comments and remember those workshop days with you and Renee and Gene! πŸ˜€

  13. Did you steal that shirt from my closet? Because it’s so mine. Last week I was a passenger, my husband was driving and I was so hungry/low blood sugary I just wanted to scream at everything and for no reason. Now, granted that’s me on most days, in the car, when I’m not hungry and especially when I’m not driving. I don’t know how my husband puts up with it. He’s a better man than me.

    And for you dear Jess, in the words of Dory, “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming.”

    1. LOL. I normally AM Dory! My fiance and I were describing all our family members as Disney characters. He’s Sebastian from the Little Mermaid, and I’m Dory.

      Need to get my adventure back on and just enjoy the long, learning ride. Thanks for stopping over Kelly! I hope you’re enjoying blogging and making lots of new friends. You’re always welcome at the Happiness Project!

  14. Funny. I thought of a certain other person I know when I read this.

    1. It seems the blues are going around. I cannot wait for spring to get here!

      1. Well, in Seattle especially, but yes, winter brings the blues.

  15. “P.S. Free vitamins and neti pots all around.” (*clink* cheers.)
    This is you down? I laughed so hard when I read this. It just hit my funny bone. I’m so sorry that you’re under so much stress. Yes, life is hard and there is no amount of flossing that will help. I understand. I have not only been living through a sucky chapter, but a whole stinkin’ book full of crap. And I’m not as nice as you. Hunger would not be the only reason why I lose it sometimes. This would be one of the reason’s why I am not blogging right now. I needed a break from life. But Laird is almost done with my new site, so there’ll be no more excuses. I hope that this chapter in your life will be over with soon Jess. Hang in there. I’m sending you great big hugs! πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you Karen! It makes my day that I made you laugh! That kind of stuff fuels me so thank you. I totally get taking a break. It’s hard to manage everything all the time, so I’m glad you did what you felt was best to refocus your attention. Book edits can be sucky, but I hope in the end you come out proud and pleased as can be! Rooting for you too!

  16. You. Are. SO. Not. Alone.

    Look for pingback love. Er. See next comment. Flexing fingers. Hoping.

    Are your fingers getting all cramped from hanging on? Mine are. [Note to self: Great Marginally acceptable excuse for glob silence.]

    1. Wow, that is the perfect visual, Gloria! I do feel like I’m hanging on and my fingers are beginning to loosen. So sorry you do too. Sometimes us funny gals have a hard time finding the humor in our own lives. Big hug! Sending good vibes and a safety net your way. πŸ™‚

  17. I think it sounds like you are taking care of Joe.

    1. I keep telling him he’s going to live longer if he listens to me. πŸ˜‰

  18. I will join the others in the “you’re not alone” chorus. I’m sick of snow and sleet, and just tired all around. But I am a Pollyanna at heart, and I know the sun will return. Dig those fingernails in a bit deeper, Jess. {{hugs}}

    1. Thanks Elizabeth! I hope we all plump ourselves up with spring around the corner. There’ll still be tough stuff to deal with but having nature in a growth mood is a boost in itself. Hugs to you and here’s hoping we all survive this.

  19. Add me to the chorus as well, Jess. We all go to that sucky place from time to time and it just has to run its course. There seems to be a black cloud (like Joe Btfspik in the L’il Abner comic strip) hanging over a lot of people right now … maybe it’s the winter’s fault. This too shall pass but in the mean time keep reaching out to your friends. After all, that’s what we are for!

    1. Sorry that your feelin the pits too, Patricia. It is affecting a lot of us right now. I agree reaching out to friends is one of the best things we can do. I love seeing your Instagram photos of all those tropical flowers! Can’t wait till we see some blooms here!

  20. Big, big HUGS to you, Jess! And sometimes what Myndi said is so true for me, too.

    I’ll make a song for you (I have to reciprocate every so often…) and tweet it to you later today. It’ll be good!

    1. Sweet! I can’t wait for that Diana. Thank you! What a great gift!

  21. I totally nag my mom about taking Echinacea, when her throat is sore! I also make her too many cups of herbal tea, that she only drinks half of. I’ve given up on trying to get her to not be so forceful with the nose blowing and throat clearing.

    1. Tea, I haven’t pushed tea yet…

      *runs to cupboards*

  22. Jess one day your going to realize what a gem you are!! You are pointing out what you think are bad points but what it tells all of us here in the blogosphere is, that when you love…you love wholly & take care of those around you!! Just make sure that while your mothering him you take care of yourself!! ❀ ❀

    1. That’s the hard part isn’t it? Applying your own advice to yourself. Eep.

  23. I think you are giving sound advice! However, I am a mother.

    1. I’m helping him to live longer! LOL

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