I have a really, really hard time during the cold months. I always have.
It’s been suggested to me on multiple occasions that I may have Seasonal Affective Disorder. It’s possible. There is no doubt that the days I spend out of the sun, hidden in my room, covers over my head, leave me miserable and feeling weak. I used to work solely overnight shifts and seldom leave my room during daylight. Depression washed over me and didn’t ease for months. Granted, there were other factors at play. There always are. But I can’t help but think that brightness of the sun helps me breathe more easily. Sometimes, at least.
The days are short and cold now. It’s a week into December and I have grown so very weary of the depth of the night greeting me as I lock my door and head to work. I am tired of the sinking feeling I get every time I get out of work half an hour late and realize that I have only 90 more minutes to see the sun.
I enjoy the night. I love the smell of nighttime air and the star-kissed sky. I love feeling enveloped by its dropping temperature and its stillness. But not during the winter. In the frigid New England cold the loss of the sunlight comes down on me heavily. I feel choked by the dark: my blood seems to slow to a crawl and I am constantly fatigued and unable to accomplish anything. This year seems no different.
This morning it was nothing more than financial fear that pulled me out of bed. I woke up and moaned, silently pleading that my clock was wrong and I still had hours to spend sleeping. I felt desperate to stay wrapped up in those blankets. This was not sleepiness. This was the start to what is usually the worst dip in my depression every year. I do not know how long it will last.
Of course, I am finding myself worn down from more than just the shorter days. My patience with my job is wearing thin for various reasons. I am in love with someone who lives 6000 miles from me. My life has started moving at a fast pace and I am feeling overwhelmed. On top of that, I am feeling the pang of having no reliable parental figures in my life. This is something I have lived with for a long time, but during this holiday season, while I am on the precipice of a very different life, the ache is deep. I feel profoundly lonely.
I’m trying to push through. December, please be kind.