Act the way you want to feel

11 Aug

Act the way you want to feel. 

In high school, I spent three years working a part-time job at Dollarama. At the thriving cultural centre of Welland and Bunting road, I saw everything from a pet rat on a leash to men soliciting sex next to women’s hair accessories.

“A puppy committed suicide after he saw our bathroom!”

“A pack of wild dogs took over and successfully ran a Wendy’s!”

“I once saw a baby give another baby a tattoo: they were very drunk!”

Not quite as extreme as Tracy Jordan's experiences

Worst of all, people really get bent out of shape if you overcharge an item (A DOLLAR, I will add), they find the kitchen products ineffective, or if their favourite scented candle is out of stock. For my long-time friend Christine and I, who were and still are generally incapable of humouring other people,  dealing with long lines of impatient, entitled customers at the cash register depleted all of our energy. We’d either storm into the break room and turn off the lights, letting our batteries recharge in the darkness or play a mood game (also an excellent way to break awkward silence among 4-5 employees). We’d have “smiling contests” where we’d all smile at each other and the last one to break from their shit-eating grin would win.

Our jack-o-lantern grins were admittedly creepy at first, especially because our eyes would aggressively dart across the room making sure all participants hadn’t yet flunked out of the game. It didn’t take long, though, before our antagonistic smiles became a mask for our muffled giggles. The game itself felt hilarious, but more importantly: smiling actually made us happier. I would walk back onto the floor with a kick in my step and an elevated mood.

I haven’t been particularly happy since the accident. I moved out here because I missed the adrenaline I got from biking and hiking in the great outdoors and had hoped to resume that lifestyle as quickly as possible. Of course, it doesn’t need to be said, but “you don’t always get what you want.” My goal of feeling strong enough to do a 3 day over-night hike now has to be adjusted so that I can one day accomplish a one hour hike. In treatment I’ve met many individuals with much less mobility than me, so to them I’m probably a whiny little baby.

As of late, my pity party is finally over. I’m getting up earlier, acting happier, and slowly, feeling happier, too.

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One Response to “Act the way you want to feel”

  1. K- August 20, 2011 at 7:25 pm #

    Good on you for elevating your mood! As the pet shop boys said ” Go West…”

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