This is one of the writing prompts for the WEGO Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge. I poked through the bonus prompts and grabbed one or two that looked interesting and fun- this was one of them.
I immediately decided to toss the serious stuff- if we all said things like “air” it wouldn’t be a very entertaining month, now would it? I also, after very careful considerations, decided to skip things like “my medications”. That’s a little surprising, even to me, to be honest. While it’s true that my conditions are not, generally speaking, life-threatening on their own, my medications have an enormous impact on my quality of life.
And then I started thinking about that phrase: “quality of life”. I could get all Greek-philosopher on you and muse on what “Quality” truly is (if you’ve never been exposed to this, then you skipped or slept through that Philosophy class in college, I bet). This means very different things to different people. So, more interesting and amusing, I decided to list what quality-of-life means for me… the things that, literally, make life worth living, and life would be pretty bland without.
So here goes…
- Laughter. I feel that I don’t this nearly often enough. Whenever I type LOL? I’m laughing on the inside. Because I’m an introvert. IRL (in real life) you might see a smile peek out of the corner of my mouth. I am reserved like that. Unless it involves animals or small children being ridiculous, in which case I laugh until I cry and shake my head knowingly and say “you silly little monkey, don’t put that there…“. George Takei’s Facebook is great for moments like this- I think he’s a wonderful man and would like to hug him some day. I bet he’s a great hugger.
- Chocolate. Dark chocolate, to be exact. I like my brain-altering chemicals to be delicious, thankyouverymuch. A little chocolate every day makes life wonderful (and your waistline expand, but it’s a happy waistline, so it’s all okay, right? RIGHT?!?)
- Cats. I am such a cat person. When I see a cat, something in my brain disconnects and the “Awww!” falls out. My house-panthers are ridiculously annoying at times (looks at Zack) but I adore them both unconditionally. The fact that they are visibly ageing pains me. I would rescue every cat in the world if I could (as long as I don’t have to scoop the cats boxes, which means I will never own more than two. Well, maybe three, if they’re small and cuddle together and awww…)
- Sunlight. For a natural ginger with a heightened risk of skin cancer, the sun is not, to be honest, My Friend. I adore natural sunlight anyway, and try to get as much as I can filtered through UV-blocking glass as possible. I’d live in a house of all windows (especially if they looked out on trees or a pond like my current home does) except I don’t like the neighbours looking back at me. I’ve thought about those one-day mirror windows, but they seem sort of expensive and I wouldn’t want to blind anyone, since I live in Florida and it’s sometimes sunny here (but not nearly as often as you’d expect, however). Also, then at night they’d be able to see me when I turn the lights on, so I’d have to close the blinds and miss the stars and moon. This is why I want to live off in the woods with a big wall or fence for privacy. It has been suggested that I might have minor agoraphobic tendencies. They might be right. I could actually say more about this, but we’re only on #4 so I’ll move on.
- Love. Kind of a no-brainer, I’m sure, but after 30 years of various relationships, I hit the jackpot and married my best friend. I spent plenty of time single and happy, and let me tell you, being married and happy is WAY better. If you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend it. You don’t have to marry to live with your best friend, and in some states they don’t let you (including mine, sadly enough) but I hope that will change. EVERYONE should have the chance at this kind of happy. There, I said it. I usually try not to get into politics too much, but this is a Biggie in my opinion. So here it is. As some smart guys one said, this is all you need. If I could only choose one item from this list, this would be it.
- Computer Games. I am such a nerd. I love them all: Flash games, MMOs, FPS, you name it. Fantasy where I can fight giant creatures with a sword or blaster are best. I like to end-game raid and socialise with friends and say stuff like “WTFBBQ, n00b? I just pwned U in PVP!” (Which I would never say since I’m not big into PVP.) If this whole section is Greek to you (lots of Greeks in this post!) then it’s okay to skip it and just check off the “geek” box on the questionnaire.
- Caffeine. File this under “delicious” and “voluntary legal chemical enhancement”. I like my chai spicy and my Dew cold. I do not drink coffee- I think it smells fantastic but tastes like what I image week-old socks wrung out into a mug must taste like. (I have never actually tried this to compare.) Which, in a way, brings me to…
- Cinnamon. The smell of cinnamon is an automatic mood-enhancer for me. I use it in all kinds of foods most people apparently don’t. Cinnamon in hot chocolate? A must! And I’m a snob- I grate it myself. It’s better that way- trust me. Now, lest I get too far into the “yes, we get the point that you enjoy foods way too much” vein… (By the way, on re-reading this I kind of feel like “cinnamon is a lazy cheat- I *could* live without it, but since I can’t think of anything more Urgent, it stays.)
- Back rubs. There are just never, never enough of these in my life. I have permanent knots in my back and shoulders. Yes, I am aware that there are people who can do something about this for a small fee. Sadly, I need 2-3 sessions a week, preferably at home, which is a somewhat larger fee. Hubby helps when he can, but I have professional-grade knots. However, my hubby also gives amazing back scritches, which I think falls into this category.
- Plants. Holy crap! I made it to 10 and didn’t even realise it! Anyway, love of plants is something that I get from my parents. I find them soothing and like taking care of them. Right now I am helping hubby fill our house with spider plants by rooting babies from his birthday plant from last year (spider is his favourite plant). I like to think that I breathe better with them around. As much as I love cut flowers, I will always prefer live, leafy plants, no matter how many times I have to re-pot them because the cats knocked them over while nibbling on the leaves. If we ever finish the screened porch, we will have many more plants.
I should also note that this is my 600th post! I’m a bit boggled at that- 600!