Hasbro created a game that consists of a grid, 2 feet, 21 red discs, 21 gold discs, label sheet, and instructions. The point of the game is to strategize to block your opponent from winning by being the first person to get 4-in-a-row first.
Do you know happen to know what game I am referring to?
If you didn’t already know it is Connect 4, hence the title for this blog.
I was at my favorite little hole in the wall place on Friday night, and I was playing this game with my partner and it dawned on me that my life feels like a game of Connect 4. That the universe is playing against me and it’s a race to see who can win. It feels that I am constantly at the point where I have three in a row and then I am one move away from placing my fourth disc and my opponent beats me to the punch and blocks me. Of course I let out an expletive and pound my fist on the table, as I don’t like losing, not at games and for sure not at the game of life.
It feels like once I get things going, and it seems like I get things on a good path something happens that knocks me on my tuckus and takes the wind out of my sail. Whether it’s something big, like a regression due to a change in my hormones which caused an up roar of anxiety that caused a debilitating set back and had me questioning if my diagnosis of bipolar was actually accurate and fitting, or something simple and normal like a bird getting stuck in my chimney and there being a need for a pigeon search and rescue. Regardless it makes me feel like I am playing connect four, I played my third disc, I am anxiously waiting my turn to play my next disc to score my four in a row, and nope not gonna happen because my opponent swooped in and stole it away from me.
I take a deep breath and have to re-evaluate my approach. I literally take a step back, look at the board, and try to see it from a different vantage point to see if I missed something and if there is a different way I can play my pieces so I can “win”. I do the same in real life. I pull myself up by my boot straps. Take a deep breath. Look at the situation and try and look at it from a different angle to see if I can see things differently and get a updated perspective on what is going on.
In the present, the change in hormones was needed because my numbers were too high and too low (estrogen and testosterone, respectfully). But then it reminded me that prior to my diagnosis how I dealt with the roller coaster of feelings, emotions and mental chaos so incredibly frequently, and what peace I have had recently and how blessed I have been to have the medication that I do and the quiet that fills my brain.
And about the bird. You know stuff happens. We are getting the issue resolved and these things happen when you own a home. No need to freak out, or feel overwhelmed. We have an expert coming out to remedy the situation and all will be well.
I know that at times of heightened stress, I feel like one more thing is equivalent to the hair that broke the camel’s back. And I also know that I am not a camel.