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Posts Tagged ‘grow’

Today is the first anniversary of my Favorite Thing I Have Ever Done: purchasing my home. Having moved from place to place more times than I can remember, I am indescribably relieved to finally have a place where I can put down some serious roots. (And after having spent most of this sunny March afternoon out in the garden, I can say with confidence that the roots are coming along just fine.)

A year has passed and I find myself marveling at the newfound feeling of not having to wonder whether or not I will be in the same place for another season. In honor of the epic year behind us, and the many years and adventures to come, I’d like to share some of my favorite domestic scenes from our first year in our forever home. Here’s to flowers and sunny windows and snowy scenery and foster babies and beautiful sunsets and stacks of books and a house full of love. My Castle, my Fortress of Solitude, my Bliss Station: I hope I get to haunt you forever.

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It’s been several months since I’ve posted more than a few words or phrases to accompany my photographs. It’s hard to find words to say when you feel like you don’t have any left in you.

Spring is here, and I couldn’t be more relieved to see it. Before this past winter I never gave any serious thought as to whether or not I might have Seasonal Affective Disorder. I mean, winter sucks and all, but it’s not unbearable, right? Well, not for everyone. For some people, winter is unbearable. And this winter, I was one of them.

For me, it is the shortening of the days that sends me into a gentle downward slope. In September, even when the days are still fairly long, I notice the way the light begins to change. By 4pm the sun begins its threatening descent, even though it prolongs the process for another three hours or so. I begin to feel occasional urges to crawl into bed as soon as I get home from work. The transformation within myself is so gradual that I don’t even notice that I’m slipping into a darker place. By the time Christmas rolls around, it’s a chore to stay out of bed, and I’m too far gone to think that spring will be able to bring me back.

The thing about depression is this: when you’re depressed, you feel like you’ve been depressed forever, and nothing will ever cure it. It doesn’t matter how many times the cycles shift and come around a million times over; depression is like the metaphorical bell jar that covers up and distorts your entire past, present, and future. And how does one go about escaping the vacuum it creates?

Fortunately for me and others affected by SAD, spring does bring relief. As days grow longer I find myself coming home from work and thinking, yeah, I’m tired, but I think I’ll save that nap til later. Next thing I know it’s an appropriate time to go to bed, and I don’t have to feel guilty for indulging my tired mind. With spring comes a greater intensity of light and color, and more opportunities to get outside and warm the skin. With spring comes growth, and opportunities for distraction from mental trouble.

Even so, it can be hard to want to come back from a dark place when the world outside is getting brighter. I see and enjoy the signs of spring and new life appearing all around me, but I am still not yet quite myself. It takes an effort to regain interest in former pursuits. It’s easy to think that I have nothing more to say, simply because I have been silent for so many months. It’s easy to stay inside because my body has grown accustomed to the comfort of my own home. It’s easy to stop sharing when you have felt for months that the people who care are few and far between.

Spring has arrived, and has done her fair share. For me and for all who suffer from winter depression, it is up to ourselves now to do our part and pull ourselves out of the melting snowpiles. There are walks to be had, and sunshine to be soaked up in copious quantities. There are flowers to be planted and books to be read outdoors under trees. There is much to be done and enjoyed in life, and preparations to be made to make the next winter more bearable. Spring is here.

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