Radiation Antidepressants

A is for Arms. Yes, strong arms and hot sex work best, especially when one’s sexuality is part of the “treatment area,” and lucky are they who have them on call. Being called “Wonder Woman” and regarded as newly invested with Special Powers can go a long way to staving off any feelings of sexual insecurity. Not everyone is so lucky, however. Some of us have partners, all right, but often partners are so afraid of the C word that they flee, even if they appear to be present. When this happens, try one of these simple solutions:

F is for Fish. Paint fish, go fishing, make polyclay fish, draw a lot of little fish on a piece of office paper: it just takes three lines and a dot. Your basic fish shape is even more simple than a penguin, which is the only creature I ever tried to draw until I my fiftieth birthday after which I would try almost anything. Fish are so astonishingly decorated, however, that almost any shape, color, or design is completely believable. Try to invent a new fish and it probably already exists.

P: Pudding. Yes, pudding is almost as comforting as Mother, and my radiation team nurse encourages me to gain weight anyway, because apparently it will help me heal better. I was hoping to lose weight on what I called my “Radiation Diet,”, as most of my radiated friends did, but my appetite seems unaffected and my weight has not changed at all. Sigh. Meanwhile, I have discovered that the tapioca pudding on my supermarket’s refrigerated shelf (not to mention rice pudding and, oh god, chocolate pudding) really fit the bill when I’m too tired to think up anything to cook or too tired, having thought of something, to cook it. Pudding is the ultimate comfort food, rivaling ice cream, chocolate milk, and scrambled eggs with cream cheese.

KM is for Kiddie Movies. The Incredibles, recently rentable, like Shrek 2, made me laugh out loud for almost an hour and a half just when I really needed it– lots of fun for kids but also for adults, funny but sweet, imaginative with a James Bond sort of plot family style. Combine a really good Kiddie Movie with an adult-size glass of wine and dish of Moroccan almonds for a brief but much-need out-of-body experience.

This makes me wonder if we couldn’t do an Anti-Depression Alphabet. Any contributions?