Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Blogging: good for mental health

I often feel that keeping this blog is way too self-indulgent. What started as a simple way to keep in touch with friends and family back home has turned into something people I’ve never met take the time to read (merci, tous!). Sometimes I feel like I use it as therapy replacement—instead of getting my demons out in the privacy of a trusted professional’s quarters, I purge my woes and share too much, whether you like it or not (if you only knew how much I hold back). And while I can feel really self-conscious sharing such personal thoughts and details here, it’s also become a bit of a weird addition. Like dried pineapple.

But the cool thing is, I just realized that it has the power to cheer me up. I can cheer myself up! I did a super-quick scroll-through of the past few months and was reminded of how much beauty I’ve seen, how much fun I’ve had, how much I’m learning (even if I don’t retain it), how many amazing things I’ve eaten, and just how extraordinary this all is and how lucky I am.

It’s good to be reminded of these things as I deal with broken French ovens, non-responsive human resource employees, incompetent bank processes, or when I’m shivering in my treehouse because it’s cold and dark out at 7 a.m and I have to do my French homework before my 8:30 lesson and 9 hours of work. When I start doubting myself for coming here and wanting to go back home, it’s good to remember when I cried watching a couple dance at the Paris Plage, when I creamed my jeans over the sweetness of cantaloupe, when I pinched myself in the Louis Vuitton flagship, not quite believing that this is my life.

Life isn’t always fun and easy. You don’t always feel blessed or lucky. Bad moods can last for weeks. But at the end of the day, I guess we have to be grateful for our lives being exactly the way they are. And hopeful they’re that way for a reason.

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