Sometimes, people with depression can forget to appreciate the little things. The dark thoughts can cast a dark shadow that hides small pleasures. I know there are many simple things that I take for granted. However, there are many that I do truly appreciate.
A couple of summers ago I was in Niagara Falls. I got to go on the Maid of the Mist, a boat which takes you up close to the falls. I recounted the tale to my at-the-time-partner. She had done the same boat ride before, but was much less enamoured with it. She asked me what I liked about it. I said that I enjoyed being on the water and feeling the spray of the mist on my face. I’ve always lived near a body of water – never been more than a couple of kilometres away. I grew up near the shore of Lake Erie. I was close to Lake Ontario in university. I’m quite close to the Detroit River now. I love the water. I always have, and I hope I always will. I’m not sure if that’s what made the difference between my experience and hers. She remarked that she wished she could appreciate a small things like mist on her face more, as I do. This comment has stuck with me.
Quite recently, I’ve been cooking a bit more. I’ve had the energy for it (and school work that I’ve wanted to procrastinate on!). It makes me happy. I’ve made some desserts. I cooked some soup (I make a damn good pot of soup). I’ve baked some bread. Baking bread is especially pleasurable to me. I like bread a lot. I like warm, fresh-baked bread even more! It can be hard work and a long wait to create a loaf or some rolls, but when I’m breaking the bread to eat I don’t even think about all that. I am so very happy just to eat some bread.
As for the small pleasures which I neglect, I am working to become more cognizant of them. I often brush off small compliments. It is easy to forget about them and focus on negative comments. Clearly, it is important to make note of the negative things; how else would I ever learn from anything? That doesn’t mean the compliments don’t matter. If somebody says “You look nice today.” or “You’re so funny!” or “Thanks, you’ve been a help to me.”, I, and anybody else who is receiving such a compliment, should take it and run with it.
A good thing is a good thing, no matter how small.