You Can’t Smell The Flowers Until You Blow Away The Negativity Mist


“You are as pretty as a speckled puppy” said Oprah’s pastor to her when she was just 5-year-old and thought of herself as an ugly duckling.  Oprah went home on a high and believed it from that day forward, as this pastor woman was a very important woman, so it had to be true.

Unknowingly, Oprah passed this torch to me down the TV tubes and I used it many times with orphaned and abandoned children who thought they were ugly and worthless.  We learned how to say “Ti Precrasna” (“You are beautiful”) to children with shaved heads, missing teeth at best, not washed in years at worst.  We said it to the dirtiest, the most stressed, the ones with big dark circles under their eyes, circles of grief, circles that, to this day, project their broken hearts and their longing for their Mamas.

They grew taller, they grew stronger, they believed they were as great as we told them they were.  They were like half-dead flowers wilting at the beginning, but they sucked up the positivity like sponges and they grew and grew and grew.  We stood in awe and watched.

So, my point.  I am no therapist, but sweet mother of Jesus, can someone plug the negativity on the airwaves, can we make a COVID channel that anyone who is fixated on it can listen to and give the rest of us a break, not only from COVID, but from stress and depression, amongst the other daily negative words we hear raining down on us.

I have never suffered with depression, thankfully, but during the week, I had the radio on and my own social media.  In one day, I read the Ann Lovett tragic story of shame, depression and rape.  I listened to multiple radio stories that would bring an iron horse to its knees, with vaccine nightmares, shocking Mother and Baby Home stories that I understand have to be told, a young boy’s savage murder in Cork, the news and daily drive time discussing the stress caused by lack of leadership on the Leaving Cert kids.  The word “stress” was mentioned again and again in relation to Leaving Cert students.

Does anyone think about the massive stress and depression being poured on our heads all day long, every day?  Endless rain pouring down on us as we get soaked in negativity with the impact of so much discussion on the very subject.  If you are not stressed and depressed at this point, you are not in the gang!  For Jesus’s sake, TURN IT OFF.  Give your head a break.  Give your kids a break from it all.  We are causing the mental health problems and adding to them daily by allowing this in our cars and in our kitchens, endlessly raining upon us.  Feck the curriculum, bring the kids to the park, examine the leaves.  Who cares about Irish verbs during a pandemic?  No one.

I know the Leaving Cert kids are worried.  It is ridiculous that they do not just all get their courses and forget about the chopping and changing of inept decision makers who are causing all their angst.  Tell them all to breathe, go for a walk, examine the cloud formations, anything but worry.  I am shocked that no therapist advises RTE and others the impact they have on the nation with ENDLESS misery, fighting, upset, and angst.  Absolutely endless. 

I know many people suffer with anxiety, stress and depression etc.  Well if they turn on their radios, it will surely multiply tenfold.  Once Ryan bounces off to his jolly green house after his show, we need to put on suits of armour to keep the depression out.  I saw many on Twitter last week begging for one Late Late Show without the COVID word.  Bring it on.

If you hear all day that you are ugly, you believe it. 

If you hear all day that you are beautiful, you believe it.

If you hear all day that everyone is stressed, then you will feel you should be.

If you listen to endless misery, you will be miserable.

We live in Ireland, we have roofs over our heads, we have TVs, we have cars, we have food, in general.  We are Irish, we are better and bigger than all this doom and gloom.  We may have snow this week.  How stunning is that?  Unless you are a postman of course.  Let the kids out and forget the boring Zooms.

Of course, I do not think that everything is perfect just because you look away, but I certainly do think that you become low and miserable when you listen to 75% of the radio programmes that are like soft rain.  You may not notice getting wet, but the more soft rain there is, the wetter and wetter you will get and the more misery seeps in. 

Do yourself a favour, do your kids a favour.  Turn it off.  Do something more interesting instead, anything.

I know what hard is and many here have it hard now, our charity is in that gang, but we have not allowed it to bring us bring us down. 

The media and social media have a lot to answer for when it comes to depression and low moods.  They would need a calculator to count the amount of times negativity is on air.  It is way too often.  Shame on them for not being more responsible.  I am sick of it. 

We need more good news, more joy.  That is for sure.

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