The sun is gone, and a gray cloud hangs over you wherever you go. Hauling yourself out of bed in the morning, or even at all, requires monumental effort. You feel sick, and might even work yourself into a cold or virus.
Anything that requires more effort than a half-assed grunt is only completed alongside copious amounts of coffee and Red Bull. Even then, you hate everything around you. Your chest aches from a sadness that doesn’t exist and all you want to do is cry.
I’m back, and this time with a vengeance. Seasonal depression sucks, and can really have harsh affects on other life forms, such as myself. Nothing matters, and the apathy is torture to work through, but its possible with a nudge in the right direction by professors or coworkers. Sometimes you really need a ‘give ‘em hell’ attitude and a feisty friend to light a fire under your butt to get moving again. For anyone still stuck in the slump, work through it, and not by yourself. We can do this!
So what would any college kid with a literary-based major do in times of a crisis? Well, I researched it of course.
According to New York Times’ article, New Tack Promising on Winter Depression, as many as 20% of the population is affected by seasonal affective disorder. We get fat, crave food, are lazy and lethargic, want nothing to do with anything that isn’t sleep and are irritable all around.
For me, it’s putting on the happy face and forcing myself through the day surrounded by thousands of other students that’s the worst.
However, the article mentioned taking small doses of melatonin for those who suffer from winter depression. We crave the sun and the vitamins it gives us. The light is sorely missed, but it is much better with a little sunshine in a bottle during the darker months.
One of the article’s winter depression experts suggested that taking melatonin pills might even be better than light therapy. I’ve never had the time (or money) to go through light therapy. For an extrovert like me, being around positive or high-energy people can make you depression lift right off your shoulders. Working out with them, no matter how strenuous and nauseating the idea seems, is literally the best thing for it.
Experts are still inconclusive as to why some drag their feet as the weather gets colder. So, until we have a Google Glass feature that gives us sun all the time, take some sun pills, experiment with light therapy and the color yellow, jump out of bed to do battle with your inner turmoil, and put on that smile, no matter how fake. Soon enough, it will turn into a real smile. Then it will be sunny again, and we can weep tears of success knowing we did it and won’t have to deal with again until next year.