Saturday, December 20, 2014


How I turned A Duck-eviction into Joy, a Drum Circle, Hot Dog, Santa Claus merriment, and my own personal Mini-Band-parade!

I noticed I had gotten into a winter blahs/ holiday Blues Funk. My mind has been overflowing lately with too many thoughts that keep me from focusing, finding the joy, or sharing the joy. I tried to sit and write about some of what is going on, but there was too much jumbled and tumbled thoughts. I ended-up listing every thought that entered my mind in a one-or-two-minute period. I also remembered to ask God for guidance, since occasionally I tend to forget. Ya know, it kinda is amazing! All ya gotta do, is ask! (well, ya gotta Believe, too…) By the time I was done writing after an hour, I knew I needed to make some changes to begin kicking the Holiday blues right smack in the coveted shiny red balls, and gain back the magic that was missing.

How exactly does one begin such a process? Well for me, the answers came flooding-in almost as fast as the list of “problems”. Well, I know better than to start doing every change all at once. That will lead me to disaster. The right way to do it (for me) is to decide where I need to be, and take a step in that direction. The path certainly will not be a short/ straight path. It will be quite an adventure, and not an easy stroll.  I know I cannot get to my destination instantly. If I did, there would be far too many unfinished details that would make the new destination even more difficult than where I am now.

I noticed there are exactly twelve days left in this calendar year. I proclaimed these twelve days as “My Personal 12 Days of Christmas.” Yup, The heck with society’s already programmed twelve days. This is mine, and I gotta do it to match my needs.

One of the things I know I need to do regularly is write. I have not written in a long while, or when I have it is very infrequent. By sitting to write the initial blog that started this process, it helped get all the rest to line-up.

As soon as I finished writing and posting my Blog, I wanted to get dressed and get out for a walk. I needed to shower first, (and shave!). When I get depressed, I tend to not hurry to shower on a day off. I also tend to let my body hair all grow for the whole week, and only shave it one day on my weekend just before the work week starts again. I really hate my own body hair, so you know if I am not keeping it shaved, I am not completely balanced. Also, when ya shave only once a week, it never really gets a clean-shave. The only way to do that is to shave daily.  So I took a really long Really hot shower, and Shaved my entire body Twice completely. To me, that is The Absolutely cleanest feeling ever!

As soon as I am outta the shower, I love to dry off in the fresh air, so I always open the door and let nature do the drying. So fresh, and refreshing!

As I was drying, I noticed again the silly magnet rubber ducks on my fridge had changed their placement once again. This was always a bafflement to me. It was almost like the miniature rubber Ducks were alive, and moved about the fridge surface freely (or they were moved by ghosts?).  But That simple glance made me realize I needed to remove those ducks. Yes, Remove, as in these ducks needed to be evicted from my life.

Evicting Rubber Ducks?! That seems a bit harsh, you say. Actually there is much more to the story. Everything is connected in my life. These ducks happened to be connected to a very unhappy period, and the simple act of them moving reminded me, and made me feel like I was back in that very bad situation(if ya wanna know that story, just ask, but won’t include it in this post.) I knew the ducks needed to go. But because I had already figured out some of the changes I needed to make, I knew to just get rid of them was not good. These ducks were destined to make others smile.
So I loaded all of them into my pocket, and went for a nice walk this evening. There were eight of them. I knew I would walk around town, and place them on random metal surfaces to be discovered and make someone else smile.

It gave me great joy to know I recognized how damaging my life had become and This time I was giving them to someone that could find the joy, instead of just tossing them in a dumpster, or over a random fence.  (That is one of my safety-escapes I use when life is needing to be changed fast… Just dump stuff.) Tonight, however, I smiled knowing I was thinking clearly, and would take the time to do it right.

I had not planned to photograph each one, and post it at all. But as soon as I placed the first one, I grinned. I did not need to take a picture or need to post it, but knew I wanted to, and hoped others would find joy in this, too. So I chose Instagram, and made up the hashtag #spreadducklove . Even as I posted it, I was only gonna post the first one. But as I placed each new one, I again felt that sharing it for everyone to enjoy would be a great way to help me build my joy, and fill my nearly empty tank of spirit I was needing. (By the way, if you would like to join me on Instagram, or would like to see the posts, my Instagram name is "halfaniceday")

After placing the first three, I was feeling quite a bit better. I actually felt enough of a spiritual lift that to interact with other humans would not be a bad thing, so I headed to The Container Park to grab a Hot Dog. (I have not stopped for a Dawg in two months! And Hotdogs are such an important part of my life, you know I was not in the right path!) There are many reasons I have not gotten any hotdogs in two months. I will go into those in later posts.

This is the first time I've loaded a video in my blog...
Hope it works :)
As I approached Container Park, I was pleasantly surprised to be walking up just as they began their dusk drum-circle! Ever since I moved Downtown in August, I had hoped to catch their Drum Circle. But it seemed it was not meant to be. Each time, I would arrive just as they finished-up, and were packing the drums until the next night. But Tonight, It was just beginning! I enjoyed that! (No I did not play a drum).

After enjoying the Drum Circle for a bit, I went inside to Order my HotDog. I chose to sit on the patio so I could continue to hear the drums. I chose a seat just across from where Santa was seated for his evening visits. Oddly enough, for a Friday Night, there was not a crowd. But no crowd around Santa makes it so those who would otherwise not approach him would choose to. It gave me much joy to watch the dozen-or-so people of all ages go visit Santa. This was the most informal Santa- visiting you could imagine. Santa was a cool old gut, with real whiskers. He had a nice suit, not one of those crappy rentals you see at the malls. Also his whole attitude was comfortable. He let everyone who came past decide how they would interact. There was no script, no phony-nes. Some chose to be flirty, some chose to be shy. Some ladies sat on his lap while their friends took photos. Some guys did, too. Some chose to stand next to him. Some gave a pretend kiss for the camera. (There was also no camera already set-up with a fee. If someone wanted a photo, they were free to use their own camera, and take as many as they wanted!) Some kids went to see him and get a photo. I never once heard him ask anyone what they wanted for Christmas!  He was so comfortable, I was half-tempted to go sit on his lap and take a photo! (The only reason I did not was if he managed to ask me “What I wanted” I likely would have lost it and been bawling.  (Yes, that is how bad my winter blahs/ holiday blues are this year!)

But I did enjoy my Hot Dog on the patio while watching all the joy with Santa.
Then it was time to move-on with my Placing of the Duck magnets.
By the time I finished eating I had already gotten notifications on Instagram that my three photos already had lots of likes. (Mind you, I really do not care if I get likes or not. I do not post for popularity at all. I post to share. If one other person finds a smile in what I’ve posted, then it was already doubled its intended purpose.)

So, on down Fremont I went to just enjoy the evening. Yes, I went to one of the most crowded places in Downtown Las Vegas for the sole purpose of enjoying it! I usually go where there are less people, and less noise. But with the mind-set of spreading Joy, I managed to not be overwhelmed by all the activity. I also was able to find the joy. I found I was amused at the antics of the street “performers”, beggars, and even the tourists.

Not one person noticed what I was doing as I placed and photographed each miniature Duck. It made me giggle to wonder what would be the reactions of those who discovered them.  I spread Ducks all down Fremont Street from 13th all the way to Main. I posted a photo of each as I did. Kinda like a treasure hunt with a wee-bit of background showing… wonder if anyone that sees them online (I also shared to Twitter and Tumbr, but have not looked for notifications in those sites) will go find them? And if they do, will they share the photo with me?

After all the ducks were placed, I still was not needing to escape the crowds. That in itself is an amazing feeling! To be able to enjoy a noisy crowd on a Friday night!.

As I approached 2nd street, I was thrilled to see a College Band quickly assembling. I was not aware of the event they were part-of, just stumbled upon busloads of College kids grabbing their instruments, getting into formation, and beginning to play. It was like a mini-band-show show for Me! (They had “Utah” on their instruments, and uniforms.)I watched them play a couple of songs, and then they marched off into the crowds. Turns out there is a football Bowl of some sort, and the team bands were having a competition/ rally in Fremont Street. Then the Fremont Light Show began, and it was all focused on those two teams, their football highlights, and rah-rahs. (It was Utah, and Colorado featured, and something about “Vegas Bowl”) I really don’t care about the football at all. I prefer the bands. But I was thrilled I had been at the right place at the right time to get a mini-parade just for Moi!

Felt great to smile! A Real smile 'cuz I was enjoying it,
instead of just a pretend smile!

Would I begin to pretend for one minute that just because I had one evening of joy and happiness that I am completely out of the blahs/ blues/ funk I was in? Nope. I got a long way to go. It will be many ups and downs. It will be a struggle to regain the magic, the joy, and the freedom I need from the imprisonment of depression.  One of the things I’ve learned is that the magic will not just appear, nor will the joy. I know I have to create it, give it, spread it before it will ever surround me. Yup, as much as I hate it, I gotta pretend it is there, to make it until it really is there.

Depression will overtake me if I let it. It already has a deep-rooted seed in my spirit, and does not take “no” lightly when I tell it to go away. So many people think I am always happy. I wish I was as happy as they think I am. I absolutely hate all the complainers and whiners in the world. I refuse to be one of them. I would rather fake a smile, and have a glimmer of hope than to always frown and believe there is no hope.

The mind is a powerful tool. We create what we think. (Or more appropriately, we encourage, strengthen, and allow to grow whichever we focus on.) My depression is part of who I am. I always have had depression. If I choose to focus on it, it will take over. If I choose to focus on ways to be happier, I will be happier. Although depression is often powerful, subtle, and creeps-in, I know that my desire to be happy is more powerful. I need to take my own advice. I often tell people that “Happiness is a choice” when they comment how happy I seem. This is true. It is a choice. I was reminded I had not made that choice, and allowed the blahs/ blues/funk to take over once again. I cannot claim to be in any way perfect, nor in any way better than anyone. I can only claim to be in charge of my own mood, my own happiness, and my own path in life.

I Know I am Not Alone in this Struggle. I have many friends who also feel it. I cannot pretend to be the one to help everyone, but I will be there for anyone in need! I cannot make it all-better, but I can promise you won't be alone in the struggle. 

No matter what your struggles are, I hope you at least recognize them, and take even one tiny step in the direction you need. Want someone to take that step with? I will walk with you. I know how it is. I will not pester you with questions, nor demand you pretend to be happy. I will support you, love you, and be there with you.