That time of year.

Once again, the calendar has turned a page and now it reads September.

It means football.  and turning leaves.  and the fall harvest.

And then there’s dusting off the light box.

For those of us who deal with seasonal affective disorder, September can be a mixed bag of feelings as the days shorten and the weather cools.  It’s the calm before the storm that begins to brew in October and November and churns wildly in the months of December, January, and February before slowly subsiding in March and April.

We may play endless hours of touch football or head out to the stadium to watch our favorite college and professional teams.  We may love the sound of autumn leaves crunching under our feet.  We may sip wine in candlelight and consume a harvest feast.  Underneath it all, there is always a fear, always an anticipation that things will turn ugly at any moment.

Now I wonder if it’s all a self-fulfilling prophecy – worrying about how bad the worst of seasonal depression will be this time around in fact leads to the worst of seasonal depression.

So this year, I’m going with a different attitude, an amazingly positive attitude.

It won’t be that bad.  It can’t be that bad.

I will stay faithful to the light box and the mid-day walks in the sun.

It won’t be that bad.  It can’t be that bad.

I will be good to myself, allowing massages and bubble baths as needed, and continuing to avoid alcohol.

It won’t be that bad.  It can’t be that bad.

And if all else fails, the calendar will read April soon enough.

Posted on September 5, 2009, in Football and other sports, Seasonal Affective Disorder. Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. I feel you. I dread the short days so much. As the activities of the year start to speed up, I want to crawl in my hole. By Christmas, I am ready to stay in bed for 2 weeks. I literally count the days to Dec 21 and the solstice…then gradually breathe as I see the sun return.

  2. I’m almost the reverse. I love the winters, cooler weather -but then again I am in Southern California. While we don’t have the severe weather and loss of sun that other places might, I only get weirded out on Thanksgiving & Christmas day(s). I have no parents or close family, no one comes to see us, and I’m reminded of how ‘alone’ I really am.

    My guy is here, but is usually swimming in his own self pity/misery at his dysfunctional family’s treatment (No cards, no calls) that nothing *I* may do is really good enough. We have each other, but I can’t heal his hurt from his blood family.

    But the Season itself at work, at other’s homes etc is happy, and I like the shorter, colder days. In the heat of summer and the sun beating down on my head as I walk to work, that makes me feel sticky, dirty and like I need 3-4 showers a day.

    I won’t EVEN start on Menopause :-) That’s a whole ‘nuther animal.

  3. I like your positive attitude. It has to make a difference! Of course, it will also help if “your teams” win!

    • Hmmm, I’ll have to do a historical analysis of my symptoms vs how my teams did that year…

  4. Minnesota Nice

    Rachel – you have
    dealt with this before. Sccessfully.
    What is it with we pwd’s thought processes that make us so certain that something bad is going to happen in the next second? Personally I think that I myself am wired for it, and that the d just enhances the fear. BUt I don’t like it one little bit.
    Stay the course sister. And yes, we will move through fall, and winter, and then come to the renewal of spring.

    • fear indeed rules my life, sometimes. unfortunately. there’s plenty to love about autumn and winter, but losing sight of that is far too easy.

  5. lynn @ human, being

    It won’t be that bad this year.

    I’m telling myself too.

    But I’m not believing it. Yet.

    Time for me to bring the lightbox out on Tuesday morning, 15 minutes in the morning, working up to 75 minutes by February. And still considering the Wellbutrin, feeling like I HAVE to take it. Even if I don’t want to. I’m afraid not to is the bottom line, and I’m afraid of it equally.

    • Maybe if you set out to say I’ll start it this date and I’ll make sure to end it this date, it won’t cause the problems it did last year.

      I don’t know when I’ll end my SSRI – I know I can’t end it in the middle of winter. Will I have done enough work to be able to by March? I hope so.


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