21 September 2007

Weird Me Interactions

In years past, I've always been happy to see the Halloween displays. Halloween is one of the few major holidays to be openly pagan. This year, though, I noticed that I was avoiding the Halloween displays. If possible, I'd avoid going anywhere near them. If I had to walk by them, I did my best to ignore them. I just might have figured out why tonight. Or part of why.

Normally, I practice ten minutes of empty-mind meditation as part of my daily routine. Since the Halloween thing was bothering me, I used that as a specific focus instead. I cast my mind back to last year and didn't find much, except that maybe my holiday depression started right around Halloween. I also remember looking at the displays and seeing things that Grandma would have liked, and feeling the loss all over again. That wasn't really it, though.

I cast my mind back to the year before. Grandma's birthday is in October, not too long before Halloween. Worse, it was in October that she first went into the hospital. I think seeing the Halloween displays is just too strong a reminder of that. I seem to react most negatively to Halloween style faces, so rows full of masks are...problematic. And pretty much any representation of "Death" results in an immediate, "Bastard!" from somewhere deep inside my mind. Doesn't take a genius to figure that one out. Black cats I'm okay with; faceless pumpkins are fine; autumn leaves, etc, don't bother me at all; coffins I want to smash; costumes result in anger (maybe because they represent hiding of a sort and I'm sick of hiding); animatronic anything makes me feel ill; the whole orange-black-purple color scheme has me seeing red.

I haven't decided if this means I should avoid Halloween displays altogether or keep pushing myself to look at them in an effort to get over the whole thing. The last part sounds eminently sensible, but with my track record over the past year, I doubt I'll go that route. I started confronting emotions head-on after I got sick of hiding from them. Unfortunately, it was often like standing on the railroad tracks and daring the train to hit me. Things aren't as sharp this year, so maybe it won't be so bad, but I'd rather head this off at the pass. I do not want another case of holiday blues.

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