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Winter Blues

March 13, 2014

Guys, I’m in a rut. I may even be depressed.

cloudsIt’s the halfway mark for my student teaching, meaning in 8+ weeks I’ll be back with my hubby (YAY!) in that sunny desert-place we call home. But right now, I’m living with my parents in what has got to be the rainiest, dreariest place in the universe: Western Washington. Ironically, about a year ago I wrote a post about Seasonal Affective Disorder and how I had come to believe it was a real thing. At the time, I based that conclusion on the fact that I had been so undeniably happy for the past year—while living in a super sunny place. Well, if I thought it was a real condition then, now I KNOW it is. Because it freaking rains every day and I just want to curl up in my bed until May 11th when I’m leaving on a jet-plane.

Last week I was at a friend’s house and I finally said it out-loud: “I think I might be depressed.”

I told her I had been sleeping a lot. Like taking 2-3 hour naps in the afternoon and still going to bed at 9:30. I’d been having back pain ever since a minor car accident a few weeks ago, and the chronic ache made me worry I’d never be free of it. I described how I had gone shopping, but couldn’t bring myself to buy anything or even try anything on, because it just seemed like too much work. Even the pins on Pinterest had lost their appeal; I had taken to lethargically scrolling down the page, but never pinning anything, because there just wasn’t anything there I liked. That, friends, was the final red flag. When you spend half an hour on Pinterest but don’t pin anything…something is very, very wrong. And then there’s the weather. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gazed out the window of my classroom at the pouring rain and felt like I was locked in a damp, cloudy prison. And worse, a prison populated with obnoxious adolescents!

This friend has had her own struggles with depression over the years, so she could feel my pain. She recommended exercise, which I’m already doing pretty well at, and Vitamin D supplements to counteract the lack of sunshine. Then she put on “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, and, I’ll admit…it made me a little bit happier.

I think it’s not surprising, or even wrong, for me to be feeling less than chipper all the time, given how long I’ve gone without a hug or a kiss from my husband. And student teaching in the public schools is known to be something of a grueling ordeal. I’m holding on to that—the idea that what I’m feeling is actually pretty normal, and probably isn’t the beginning of a suicidal spiral. At the same time, I don’t want to wallow in it and give in to the mindset of needing the days to pass as quickly as possible. There are some truly wonderful things about this season of my life, including the quality time I’ve been spending with my parents and younger brother, and the skills I’m gaining at work. And then there’s good ol’ Daylight Savings Time, which has made the days seem longer, sunnier, and all-around brighter these past few days. With the first day of Spring coming up next week, I have to hope that my winter blues are on their way out, and I can go back to being my happy self very soon.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. March 14, 2014 12:56 pm

    Bodies are strange. I used to think that there were only like 5 life stages, you know, really old people, teens and babies need a ton of sleep, tweens and 50 somethings need none. But I think it’s more complicated than that, our bodies going through cycles of change every few years or even every few months. Lately I need way more sleep than I did say 3 years ago in college, and even less now than I did in high school, and way way more than I’ll need in the coming years. Last week it was all I could do to rouse myself and explore a city before 10am and the last week i’ve been up at 7am ready to walk all day. it’s not really all that situational, it’s a lot about timing.

    not to say i dont totally agree that rainy weather makes things way worse. the sun will come out, don’t worry! though it does concern me that you feel like this and still are mostly planning to live in Washington long term…

    p.s. my dad’s favorite thing to tell me when I’m tired is that I’m not really tired, I’m just bored. he’s right way more often than not. so… find another hobby? (though I guess over exertion leads to sleepiness too so I’m not sure how helpful that is either)(super also I got bored with Pinterest a few months ago. i just can’t do it anymore. maybe it’s the site, not you)

    • March 14, 2014 9:51 pm

      Yes, boredom could be part of it, but the fact that I fall asleep within minutes, even in the middle of the day, seems to indicate that I’m physically tired. Idk, maybe I’m just in a bit of a slump. I hope I regain some energy soon, though…I’m way too young to have Grandma stamina!


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