Every winter I suffer from Seasonally Affected Disorder; in other words depression. Except it hasn’t hit me yet this season and I’m three weeks later into the season than usual. The only difference I’ve noticed about this year as opposed to all the others is the shortage of snow. Today is February 4th and there is no snow on the ground.
By this time every other year I’ve felt the walls closing in on me. Claustrophobia is my primary source of depression and the open winter while nearly as cold as others doesn’t feel as restricting.
There are numerous sources of that closed in feeling including three consecutive days of rain, power outages, small and crowded spaces, airplane cabins and unresolved sin, but none as prevalent as winter with its dark days, cold temperatures and snow.
While I hear people praying for snow as if it’s something to be desired I’m never among them, not even for Christmas. As the television advertisement says “Depression hurts…everyone.” It’s as if the coffin lid is closed and nailed shut with me inside. The hopelessness is deafening. The darkness comes from inside me to meet the darkness invading from outside. If you’ve never felt it creeping up on you as the season progresses you are indeed fortunate. Medication helps but only helps to a point as the depression stalks me minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day until the weather breaks with the arrival of spring.
I praise God for this open winter, for these three additional weeks of sanity; these three weeks of being able to breathe and experience life. It’s an amazing gift I’ve never experienced in February.