Long dark tea-time of the soul

Around this time of year, especially at this time of day, an oppressive gloom descends. I feel an impenetrable sadness that can make everyday activity feel like walking through thick fog.

It has nothing to do with cancer. I get it every year, a kind of over-riding sense of things coming to an end, as though quite literally when the nights close in so do my options.

I know this is classic Seasonal Affective Disorder. Strange how falling light levels can actually affect your thought processes. Circumstances which at any other time would seem neutral or even positive become weighted with negativity, and I rage against the dying of the light.

Over the years I’ve tried ways of handling it. Forcing myself to do stuff. Allowing myself to hibernate. Taking St John’s Wort. Buying a light-box. Walking to work so I catch at least some daylight. All these things help a bit. Usually closer to Christmas with all its associated distractions I start to pick up, and when the new year comes, even though 1 January is really just an artificial milestone, I feel a huge sense of hope and relief.

It’s almost worth it for the high that comes in March, when everything opens up again and life is once more ripe with possibility.

People say to me sometimes: “Your blog sounds upbeat but how are you really?” I’d say mostly it’s a pretty accurate reflection of my mood. I am glad that diagnosis and the worst of the treatment came in the Spring and Summer months. Had I been diagnosed in November not March, this could have been a very different blog.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    Dec 06, 2010 @ 17:02:19

    Know EXACTLY what you mean! Hang on in there! Lucyx

    Reply

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