There is something about this time of year. Whether it is the twinkling lights, the freshly fallen snow, or the silence that comes with it, or the beautiful decorations and lovely trees that are aglow in everyone's windows, it never fails to put a smile on my face when I see them. They make me happy, like they would most people.
But we have to talk about the other side of the coin as well...S.A.D. Seasonal Affective Disorder. Nevermind I want to punch the person who came up with that acronym, however, that is another time and another place, but, this is the time of year that it kicks up full force. It gets darker sooner, it's freezing out, so our Vitamin D plummets, which doesn't help, there are many factors involved.
Many people don't want to talk about S.A.D. It comes back down to that stigma again, about mental illness. Did you know that more than three million people have Seasonal Affective Disorder? Sure, it isn't a long-term illness, and for most, can resolve itself within a few months when spring arrives. But for others, it can blow up into full blown depression. I know, I've had it happen to me.
This is supposed to be the most happiest time of the year, and here all I want to do is to lay in bed, with the covers over my head, crying my eyes out, wishing I wouldn't wake up. All these thoughts I've had, it's not worth it, you're not a good mom, anyway, you're a bad wife, too. A shitty daughter and sister, a burden to all around you. I've had them all. They are not fun, and it is not a good place to be in.
It took me a long time to actually step out of the shadows and talk to someone about my S.A.D. First, my family. Then, my psychiatrist. There is no shame in seeking help. I REPEAT, THERE IS NO SHAME IN SEEKING HELP. I know a lot of it is stigma related, and I keep saying that, because there is a problem with it. So many people are afraid of what people think. You know what I say? Fuck 'em. They don't know you, not like you know you. So if you think you have Seasonal Affective Disorder, please, please talk to someone, anyone. I'm leaving a bunch of resources at the bottom of this post so you can check them out. Some are therapy websites, others are informational. That is my holiday gift, of hope and help. I'm not saying that to be narcissitic, not in the least. If I came across a blog post that helped me, and many have, I view it as a gift.
Have a beautiful holiday, everyone.