S.A.D. State of Affairs

‘Tis the season to be jolly, fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la.


Bah humbug.

As the rest of the world is preparing for the happy, merry, jolly holiday season, up to 10% of the population is slowly sliding into a major depressive episode. It’s called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), and it makes the late fall and early winter months miserable for those unfortunate enough to suffer from it.

I am one of those people. The cloud seeps into my brain as the days get shorter. By the time we revert to Standard Time, I am fully engulfed. My energy levels are non-existent, as is my appetite and motivation. My desire for sleep in unending. Tears hover, waiting to tumble from my eyes for no reason at all.

It fucking sucks.

When I was younger, I would force myself to participate. I’d buy presents for everyone I could think of, and send holiday cards to over 250 people. I’d decorate my tree, my house, my office, my car, myself. The world said it was time to be cheery, so dammit I’d be cheery.

Now, I just don’t give a damn. I no longer celebrate the season. No more decorating. No more holiday cards (although I do still beat myself up about this one). No more forced cheer. I’m miserable all season, and I’m not going to pretend anymore.

Which doesn’t mean I’m trying to spread gloom everywhere. I’m just trying to keep my head above water, so I apologize if I seem a little distracted. I try to keep  my misery to myself. I don’t want anyone’s sympathy. I just want to ignore the holidays, increase my meds, and take a very long nap. Hibernate.

I do wish my friends a very Merry Christmas and  Happy New Year.  I hope my friends are enjoying the season and all the festivities. I just hope it’s all over soon.

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4 Responses to S.A.D. State of Affairs

  1. steven1111 says:

    I think SAD is pretty awful too. I’ve dealt with it for years and it just keeps coming back every time. I cycle tho so I have some good days but the down ones really suck. Good luck in getting thru it. I hope it passes soon for you.

    • crisisinca says:

      Thanks Steve. I actually have bipolar 2, so I cycle, but because it’s bipolar 2 I don’t have manic episodes, I just cycle between normal and depressed. It used to be bad enough that I needed to be hospitalized for a good portion of the winter, but thankfully it’s been more stable over the past 12 years. This year is particularly hard because of other stresses, but I’m getting through it. Just can’t wait for it to be over.

  2. indytony says:

    I can appreciate your dilemma. For years, I’ve struggled with despair that is particularly acute around the holidays. As a pastor and a parent, I did have be “cheerful” enough to at least attend to my duties. This year I find myself unemployed and separated from my family, so I can be perhaps more authentically sad. I bumped up my meds too, but I’m also trying to read inspirational literature and develop more friendships (even if they are mostly virtual ones). I’d love for you to visit my blog, check out particularly my reflections on the sadness of the season and leave a comment if you feel so inspired. Have a meaningful Christmas.

    • crisisinca says:

      Thanks for your comment. I’m sorry you’re going through a hard time too. Being unemployed and being separated from your family are 2 things independently that could lead to a depression, so having both of them occur simultaneously, plus during the holiday season…I hope you’re staying on top of it with your doctor.

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