Sunday, January 25, 2009

I think the huge knitting project I've been frantically working on for weeks now is actually excellent cover for my usual January depression. At times I can get overwhelmed by thoughts of all the things I am not doing: all the books I haven't read, the movies I haven't watched, the runs I haven't gone on, the recipes I haven't cooked, the dishes I haven't washed, the laundry I haven't done. This depression most commonly strikes in January, partly because of all the new books, dvds, and other gifts I got for Christmas and partly because it's always cold and dark when I'm at my house. I have a hard time doing house chores when it's dark outside. I've never quite understood why that is. It's especially hard for me to make myself do chores when it's cold, which seems not to require much explanation.

So for the past few weeks, I have felt like I've accomplished nothing. I haven't touched a book. Most of my clothes are in the hamper. (Well, and a large pile by the hamper. And, yes, a smaller pile by the washing machine.) I think I've forgotten how to run. I have lots of other knitting projects I'd like to get started on. But I'm not doing any of it. At least I can pretend the only reason for my total inertia is this huge project. I'm now over half-way done and getting faster at it every day. I really think I can have it done in two more weeks.

Once I'm done with this project, I'll have to come up with a new excuse for doing nothing. Looking on the bright side, coming up with a good excuse will be hard work. That ought to count for something.


Unknown said...

One thing I can really relate to is the winter darkness being a factor in melancholy. I've noticed this more lately, partly because we've had an extremely cold and wet winter, and partly I think because I'm getting older and less tolerant of these things. I don't know how they do it in Scandinavia.

S said...

Well, if those Swedes have any special genes for coping with cold and dark, they didn't pass them on to me. One would think between the Swedish genes and the German genes, I'd be better able to cope. Or at least to appear to cope while I bury my feelings so deep inside, it would require a volcanic reaction for them to see the light of day.

Language Lover said...

Are you guys familiar with Seasonal Affective Disorder? I don't have it, though I am particularly light sensitive and I find that spending time with a light box improves my mood considerably.

S said...

Yeah. On Northern Exposure, they showed folks walking around with visors that had lights on them to combat SAD (apt acronymn).

I think running for me is the key, but making myself do it is the hard part. I also really have to remember to take my thyroid medicine (which I don't always do).

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