What is the first thing you do when Life deals you a big blow?

I am wondering what other people out there in the world do when life deals them a bad hand. Some examples would include: loss of a close loved one, loss of a beloved pet, loss of a job, severe monetary distress, home foreclosure, poor family relations, out of control addiction, severe depression, severe anxiety.

I usually try and get grounded. Grounding for me includes being out in nature, listening to the breeze or the waves, unplugging.

Or I rent movies with Steve Martin or Chevy Chase or Robin Williams in them - those guys make me crack up.

Lately, my wife and I are dealing with some serious family issues and a move all at the same time. I’ve taken countless walks in the woods…I’m off to go on one now before it rains again.

What do you do?

Interesting question, and a little difficult to answer.

I think I go to “safe harbor” - my home, and my family. My nest is a Big Deal to me; a large part of that is the emotional safe haven of my husband and children. We tend to come together in crisis and draw strength from each other. Our home is like shelter from the storms of life, so to speak.

And, now that I’ve cut beer out of my diet, I suppose I’d eat gallons of ice cream too. :stuck_out_tongue:

Drinkin’ still does it for me.

Went over to a friend’s and cried on her shoulder. She calls me when she needs the same thing.

I go to the ocean. I have always found peace there.

To address the specific examples you mentioned:

The first thing I do is remember that I have lived a very fortunate life. Even when times have been very dark, for the most part I can still see how good things have been and usually are.

When my mom died, I focused on the good times and how much she loved us. I see such pained and troubled parent/child relationships around here and among my friends. I feel so fortunate that I had a close and loving family. My mom died knowing we loved her.

This isn’t to say that I’m immune to sadness. It’s more of a recognition that sadness is a part of life, and when you put it all on the Scales of Life, the good times have far outweighed the bad. Even when it’s REALLY FUCKIN’ BAD. That knowledge gets me through.

Well my baby hamster Toby died today. He was three years old and i already miss him so much. I havent really done anything apart from cry. We had a burial at my mum and dads house and Ive now returned to my flat to mope around. I decided to come on here to help cheer myself up. Im curently sitting at the denial stage and Im avoiding looking at the empty corner where his cage once was. I dont know how I describe what I usually do. Just get on with it seems the best way to describe it but thats only after a lot of tears. Before when I was upset I used to take Toby out and he’d sleep on me - that would always cheer me up. Now quite sure what Ill do now. Ill just have to wait and see.

Have a drink.

If possible a joint is better for extremly stressful times. Sure none of these things will solve the problem, at all, but they do offer temporary relief, which at times can be a very good thing.

And then, of course, listen to some music. It makes me reflect and feel better at the same time.

Ditto. I just like to be alone with my thoughts. No other people, no music, no activity, no tv. I just need to sit and watch clouds. It helps me get a grip.

Eat, unfortunately.

For the REALLY big blows (i.e. Death of a loved one), I usually just close down entirely for a few days.

I’m sorry I can’t help with all of those, but when my parents died I found a grief counsellor very helpful.
I also get strength from friends.

For a lesser crisis, I keep chocolate in the fridge.

Exactly. All three at the same time is best, with plenty of volume on all three as well. In the right circumstances, a good deep doin’ works wonders as well.

I usually watch The Big Lebowski as soon as I can. I mean, it makes me laugh, and that always helps, but it also reminds me to chill out. “Life goes on, man!”

I also listen to my Wilco CDs, especially Nothingsevergonnastandinmyway Again. “We’ll find a way to make some sense out of this mess…”

Make blowerade.

Nature’s good. So is a couple of quiet reflective pints of beer in a drinking establishment where I can just sit at the bar by myself and think.

The Big Lebowski - Good idea.

I don’t drink anymore, so that’s out for me, but meditation seems to work. I just got back from a long walk and things seem a little brighter. I’m not usually low so I think this is taking me a bit by surprise.

I like what you said Kalhoun - there are a lot of family crappy issues coming to the surface right now, things that haven’t been dealt with in 20 years. Pssh - pisses me off. NO matter what you become, who you are, or where you see yourself going, family can always piss you off or help you feel better. Sometimes both at the same time. Sometimes neither one.

Take a deep breath.

I get/give as many hugs as I can. My husband, my cats, my family/neighbors/friendly strangers. And I cry. I find enormous comfort in a hug and a cry.

And then I find a way to deal with whatever it is. Sometimes getting really busy on a project, or cleaning the house, or whatever. Sometimes going for a walk, or working in my garden. Sometimes just watch a silly movie, or else a sad one, if I really feel like wallowing in my tears for a while.

That pretty much describes the past 72 hours in a Day-in-the-Life of Phlosphr. Our House is spotless and the yard cut, garden weeded…And we watched Spies Like Us. :slight_smile: There’s just something funny about saying the charactors names in that movie out loud… Emmet Fitz-Hume!! and Austin Millbarge!! LOL

Family has always been my strength, but unfortunately that’s not the case with everyone.

I think most families, even the ones that make people a little crazy, can still be a positive force in our lives. Of course, Horrendous Families ought to be cut out of our lives, but overlooking the imperfect characteristics and concentrating on the good (even recognizing the strength of a family as a whole despite it’s individual weak links) is an anchor that can be a lifelong source of comfort and direction.

Are your family issues in the Horrendous column or is this something you think you can overcome?