How to Cope with Post-Holiday Blues

You could say it’s a strange time of year to be thinking about post-holiday blues. But having just returned from a long-distance trip which was rather special, for various mysterious reasons that I am not about to disclose, I’m not ashamed to admit that the blues have hit me particularly hard this time. Do please forgive me for any misplaced or ill-timed despondency.

So how do you recover from getting back to normal life after a fabulous holiday? Or not even a fabulous holiday. Could be a disastrous holiday. Or just a mediocre one. The mere act of having been away in itself is enough – you know, out of your usual routine, in another place, possibly another time zone, another climate, another home, another bedroom, another bed, possibly with another bedmate …

Oops! Got a bit carried away there – caught myself in the nick of time! That is NOT what this blog is supposed to be about. Fingers duly rapped.

So getting back to post-holiday blues. How to cope with them? Any ideas? I could really do with some advice, because I can’t carry on like this – constantly daydreaming about being back in my longed-for, faraway location where I was able to stretch out my arms luxuriously each morning in the vast and billowy kingsize bed that was large enough for five (though two’s just fine), and perform other luxurious activities beneath that divine quilt, and stroll down to a sumptuously calorific breakfast, and indulge in second and third helpings of bacon and eggs and sausages and hash browns and toast and marmalade and waffles and maple syrup and … and not worry about weight gain because who cares about weight gain when you’re on holiday?

What else? … oh yes, go back to beloved bouncy bed in order to undertake further calorie-burning pursuits after having survived the rapacious ordeal of breakfast, then head out for the day and execute all sorts of other, less exhausting activities, such as sightseeing and reading up about what your sight has deigned to focus on, and taking more photographs than you can possibly know what to do with when you get back to Horrible Home, and …

Did I just say Horrible Home?

I did, didn’t I? How sad. Okay, so that’s brought me right back to square one. As in pining away for a place I know I will never live in, because it’s too late to have a Take Two on life. Too late for all sorts of things. Hmmmm. Too late … what depressingly definitive words. However, my very charismatic, very deceased mother always used to say: “It’s never too late, darling! Just remember the words to this song: It’s when you think you’re past love, that then you meet your last love, and you love as you’ve never loved before …

Except I’m not talking about love. I’m talking about post-holiday blues.

So, here are some humble suggestions I can offer on how to cope.

  1. Spend at least half your first day back home in bed. Preferably more than half. Even if it means skiving off work (diarrhoea will do as your excuse – no one can argue with that) and ignoring wife/hubby/partner/children/pets. Just BE SELFISH.
  2. While in bed, allow yourself to collapse into pure, unadulterated reminiscences about where you’ve just been and what you’ve been up to. No guilt is allowed to intrude on daydreams, so go ahead and fly away!
  3. When you finally drag yourself out of bed, only then should you consider dealing with practical irritations – such as unpacking, seeing to laundry, catching up on irksome emails, paying the electric and gas bills before they cut you off, sorting through all those hundreds of photos you needlessly took and which will be entirely forgotten by the time you’re dead. And no, you can’t take them to heaven with you, because in heaven you might actually be IN them once again. After all, isn’t that what heaven’s all about? Re-living your best moments, fulfilling those bold fantasies that were either too naughty or too late or too plain impossible to realise in your Take One on life? No?
  4. When you wake up on the second day, be transformed by the renewing of your mind. That’s Romans 12:2, in case you didn’t spot it. Yes, renew your mind with fresh pastures with which you have now been inspired.
  5. Don’t give in to worry or anger; it only leads to trouble. That’s Psalm 37.8. Very wise indeed. In your weakened, post-holiday state, do please forgive everyone, and I mean everyone, even if it happens to be a mother who wore black to your first wedding and as a result was never invited to your second wedding.
  6. Make your mind strong like a fortress. That’s the Dhammapada, v. 40. (It seems that the Bible isn’t the only guru-book around.) Once your mind has become a rock-solid fortress surrounded by impermeable cerebral matter, you will at last be in a mentally fit state to withstand all the frustrations of your post-holiday life. Because your mind will be like a fortress. Because every time something happens that makes you want to shriek or kick down doors or dive straight back into bed, you’ll just be able to punch the problem in the face – not the person who’s causing it, because then you could end up in prison – but the problem. And yell at it: I am a fortress and Thou shall not enter me!
  7. If the word ‘enter’ makes you feel all tingly and turned on instead of mentally fortified, then you should go back to the beginning of this list and start all over again.

Or better still, just book another holiday post-haste.

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