Like that bastard Loki, life is…
This is my favorite time of year, at least from the standpoint of what I look forward to. Cooler weather, wind, and the feeling in the air, something that I can’t quite put my finger on but that I know is there. I spent nine months out of the year anticipating this change, from summer to autumn…
… and then I spend those three months wishing that I could hibernate, fighting myself for the energy to do anything other than sleeping or wishing that I was asleep.
SAD is funny.
Seasonal affective disorder, or course, is just one of the two things that I deal with on a daily basis (the other being a fairly mild case of bipolar disorder).
(I say mild because, aside from rapid and unpredictable mood swings — and don’t get me wrong, those can be pretty severe — I function as well as anyone that I know, and have for nearly thirty four years without medication or therapy)
It’s not a lot of fun, and it’s worse being aware of it in some ways. On the one hand, I’m never wondering why I’m feeling the way I do; I don’t have to try and figure any of this out. I know what it is and where it’s coming from (even that is a nowhere point that doesn’t exist outside of a chemical imbalance). On the other hand, I know wxactly where it’s going, what’s coming. It’s not unlike a yearly prison sentence (sans the shank-phobic showering and gang rape potential), three months in lockdown without the possibility of parole.
And I don’t shut down completely every year. There are moments of light, some of them quite long. But for the most part, until shortly after December 21 (when the days start to get longer again), those moments are exceptions.
But we struggle on, don’t we? Because we don’t have a choice, if nothing else.
My brother is planning on moving away shortly, and while I’m not sure that he’s being entirely honest with me (or himself) about how badly he wants to leave, to move away from all of this and on to something better, I think he’s doing the right thing. There’s a lot of baggage that you can accumulate in one place over time, and while leaving the situation won’t solve your problems (there’s nowhere to hide / with a sickness inside), a lot of those problems aren’t anything other than emotional memory.
But he mentioned tonight that he’s ready to move forward. That his recent trip to Denver gave him a lot of closure. That he realized that when he was out there before, he was lost and sort of wandering around, that he found his calling (his words) over the past few years back in Birmingham.
And it hit me that I’ve never really found my calling. Or at least, I’ve turned a deaf ear to the voice if it’s been trying to get in touch with me.
I look around and see everyone around me moving forward, whether the drive is internal or external. And I wonder what happens to those of us who don’t really have an external reason to push forward, and have grown tired of fighting for the sake of an internal drive.
These are the thoughts that make me wish for hibernation, in case you wonder.