...is that you suddenly start to hear all of those cliched pieces of advice that so many TV Specials and tea labels have to offer. And of those sayings, you find the ones that apply, and make sense, and occasionally even help.
So now that things look a little better than they did a month ago, I've discovered a few immortal truths. Some are deep and oft-quoted, some are stupid and true nonetheless. Here are what I'm calling my October lessons:
1. If you're so stressed you can't think and your campus is offering free back rubs on Wednesdays, for the love of G-d take the back rub.
2. Running away never solved anything. If you must run, make sure it's toward something and not just away from responsibilities and all of those scary things that make up life.
3. Courtesy of my awesome friend: "Everything will be alright in the end. So if it's not alright, it's not the end."
4. Fortune cookie fortune I found in my coat pocket when I took out my autumn coat for the first time this year: "The major value in life is not in what you get now, but in what you become."
5. Another fortune cookie: "The most important relationship you have is the one you have with yourself" or the other version of the same advice: "If your friend spoke to you the way you sometimes speak to yourself, would you continue to be friends with them?"
This one especially was one I had to deal with when I realized that I've really got to work on this self-esteem thing I keep hearing about.
6. Watching Germans sing about Russians while dressed like Mongolian warlords will solve all your problems for five blissful minutes.
7. Courtesy of Pushing Daisies (moment of silence): "A hug is an emotional Heimlich Maneuver. Someone puts their arms around you and squeezes real tight and all your fear and anxiety come hurling out in a big, wet wad, and you can breathe again."
8. William Safire: "The right to do something does not mean that doing it is right."
9. "If you truly want something, you'll find a way. If you don't, you'll find an excuse."
10. And the awesome Neil Gaiman: "MAKE GOOD ART."
It's autumn. I read a quote today somewhere on the internet which claimed autumn as the perfectly balanced season. Well, as a Fall Baby who loves autumn colors and all pumpkin-flavored things, I agree. And I gotta say, now that I have some perspective back, I realize I'd have to be nuts not to enjoy this season of cool breezes, pumpkin pies and kosher lattes, sweaters without winter coats, boots without wool socks, bat-themed merchandise, and not-quite too early sunsets. I love this season. I'm going to spend the rest of it trying to remember what I learned so far and enjoying what I've got until I figure it all out.