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Surviving Winter

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Fall and winter seasonal affective disorder is the official way to classify those who, like me, are sad during the colder, darker, shorter months of the year, which (if you ask me) should be everyone on the earth. In fact, I think there’s something wrong with people who don’t fling themselves off the hopeless cliff of frigid winter despair every single day for several months on end. There’s a reason animals hibernate in the winter and that reason is that winter is only tolerable in a semi-vegetative state. There are those who disagree, and for these lunatics I have a new diagnosis… SDD: seasonal delusional disorder, a subset of reality classified by:

  • an affinity for snow
  • early onset Christmas decorations
  • no concept whatsoever of the temperature
  • excessive use of the word “cozy”
  • the ability to dress in clothes other than sweatpants
  • Ugg boots

Today all 50 states were below freezing, and I’m not sure I’ve ever felt greater despair. No one is safe. Not even Florida, which is where I planned to go this afternoon when I lost my mind and considered taking a “sabbatical” somewhere warm for a couple months because that’s a totally logical thing to do right now. False.

Winter renders me helpless and hopeless. Today after work, for example, I had grand plans to go to yoga and Crossfit and the grocery store and basically to just keep moving until I fell asleep so that maybe I’d forget what season it is. INSTEAD I came home, considered booking a flight to anywhere not here, ate all my pita chips, pondered whether this is truly all life is, lost all use of my limbs, and then went to bed. At 6pm.

I came to around 7pm when I dragged myself to Crossfit to lift heavy things in a warehouse with no heat. I have no words.

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The weird thing about me in the winter is that while I’d like to just black out for four months, I am instead completely mentally wired and can’t even sleep at night. For four months I decide that every single thing in my life is wrong and should be excessively fretted about and then tossed out. I’m talking clothes, furniture, human beings, work. You name it, I’m over it in December. Burn it to the ground.

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Me from November – March

I was going to wrap this up with something like “It’s not all bad…” but it is and I can’t think of any of winter’s redeeming qualities so here is a dramatization of my current state:

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14 Comments

  1. Emma Emma

    Feeling grateful for that cat picture.

    Thanks always for your truth-telling.

    • Katie Katie

      <3

  2. Tara Tara

    I get it, except this is how I feel during the summer. (Yup, one of those people. No Uggs though.) I want to literally peel my skin off because I can’t breathe properly when it’s over 75 degrees. I hide in the AC and haven’t been to the beach in years because I realized I hated it. People are just different.

    That cat picture is amazing.

    • Katie Katie

      Incredible! I just read about that–that people get like this in the spring/summer too. I had no idea. It’s such a foreign concept to me since that’s when I thrive… which I suppose is how people look at me in my current misery, like: “What is wrong with you?”

      • Tara Tara

        Haha. Yup! People think I’m crazy but I think it just comes down to body chemistry and what you find invigorating versus suffocating. I went running this morning in 23 degree weather and actually had to peel off a layer of clothing halfway through. It always takes a few days to perfect the layering. 🙂

      • Katie Katie

        OH MY GOD. I would die.

  3. I’m definitely affected by the winter weather. To make things worse, our furnace broke on Monday and it got down to 46 degrees in our house. The snow is pretty, but I do not do well when it’s cold and dark outside!

    • Katie Katie

      Ah! Does your heat work yet?? That’s terrible. I like snow as it’s falling and then I’m pretty much over it.

  4. That cat pic is such an accurate portrayal of me during the wintermonths as well, urgh, only 3 more months and it becomes acceptable to start praying for Spring again!

    • Katie Katie

      I laugh so hard every time I look at that cat. Let the countdown begin…

  5. TaMo TaMo

    I wish winter was ONLY four months loooooooooooooong!

    • Katie Katie

      Well it’s high time you migrated south. Unfortunately, even that’s not working this year…

  6. kim kim

    I hate winter but don’t struggle with SAD. My husband does though. He uses a sunlamp in the mornings while he eats and find that it helps him wake up and be in a better mood throughout the winter.

    • Katie Katie

      I just went straight to Amazon to look up sun lamps…

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