I was something in the 60s but now I'm just sixty something.

Seasonal Affective Disorder and Growing Fur

on November 10, 2012

I am fighting my annual war of avoiding pseudo hibernation. If you have never pseudo hibernated it involves a lot of sleep, TV and carbs. Wine can also play a part in this but given the length of the evenings this time of year it can be difficult to manage. I hate how short the days are now. I am one of those people who is extremely sensitive to daylight (or lack thereof). I just want to eat, sleep, and grow fur (although I am pretty sure PETA would object to this.) While some people love to go outside and take in the crispness of fall I just go to the refrigerator and take in what’s in the crisper. And since I don’t actually have fur to thicken, my waistline thickens instead. Basically, autumn just makes me hungry. And SAD.

Kicking up the exercise a notch usually helps with this. But to make matters worse, there was a construction “oops” involving water pipes in the building where my gym is located. So far the gym has been closed for a month. (So have the mouths of all the parties involved in this mess. I wonder how many lawyers are going to Disney World on this one? ) I have been unduly upset about this. I had just splurged on a very expensive gym outfit as a motivational tactic to prepare for the challenge of changing the clocks back.  Now I am all dressed up with no place to go. Maybe I’ll wear it to happy hour instead. My friend Michelle (name changed to protect the guilty) told me her butt has fallen two inches as a result of not having access to her favorite exercise machines. I had not even considered my butt!  She made me realize that with the gym closed and all that I eat at this time of year I am in big trouble. So now I have been trying hard to avoid three-way mirrors. Unfortunately, this eliminates shopping, which, like exercise,  I find to be an excellent adjunct therapy  for Seasonal Affective Disorder.

I was taking out the garbage the other night and could hear the musical notes of  “Retreat”  drifting over from the navy base as they were lowering the flag for the evening. I went into shock. It wasn’t even five o’clock! I wanted to scream, “Stop,you can’t do this yet! It’s too early to be getting dark!” I had just been considering hopping on my bike to pedal over to the store for some sour cream to blob onto the giant carb laden potato I was planning to bake for dinner. The bugle made me realized I might be too late. And sour cream had sounded so soothing. Frantically I looked around. The shadows were rolling across the yard just like the fog does. I ran into the house and turned on the outdoor party lights in an attempt to chase away the fast approaching night in what seemed to me should have been late afternoon. All they provided were a few twinkles. My glorious, life sustaining  sunshine was gone.

Sadly, I groped my way into the darkened kitchen and found the light switch. I poured a (big) glass of wine, put the potato in the oven and plopped down on the couch with the remote and a big faux fur throw. I felt defeated. I had lost the day. I know my brain will adjust to this cruel trick of nature. It does every year. In the meantime I will finish off the Halloween candy. Chocolate works wonders.

11 responses to “Seasonal Affective Disorder and Growing Fur

  1. Charlotte (Toddy) Phillips says:

    Talking about chocolate, I’m considering munching on a Baby Ruth leftover from Halloween, as we “speak” !!! I’m gonna do it !!!!

  2. Cindi Hamilton DiMichele says:

    As I made two microwave S’mores today, I was pondering why in the world I’ve been eating SOOO much the last few days. I had already gained 6 lbs, but I’m afraid how much more in the last two days. It never occurred to me that it’s probably the shorter days and cold weather!
    So thank you for that suggestion, Philis! It’s so much better to have an excuse!

    I am taking this problem seriously, and decided today that I am allowed to watch daytime tv IF I do it on my treadmill. I got in 22 minutes in one shot. I love an excuse to not do anything in the daytime, so maybe I found an effective way to control the overeating.

    I’ll let you know how it works out – hope your gym opens soon!

  3. Cindi Hamilton DiMichele says:

    * Guess “control” should be “combat”.

  4. sharon says:

    that was cute. i have begun to fight the yearly seasonal affective disorder by using one of the “official” verilux lamps. i put it in front of me next to the computer every morning. watch for that company’s sales…they have good reductions around christmas time. there are lesser “lumens” ones by that company on sale in walgreens, but this “happy light” model is the one to go for. honestly, i think it works. i used to be much less motivated without it. good luck.

  5. Richard Cole says:

    Another winner (nice length)!

  6. Scott Miner says:

    Philis, thanks once again for putting a huge smile on my face. You poor child, what time do the stores close in your neighborhood? I need to get you and John down to Tijuana where we can drink wine in the theaters. The movie is always secondary!

    • sixtiestosixties says:

      Ha ha Scott! The stores don’t close that early. I just don’t like riding my bike to the store in the dark. I could have taken the car but that wouldn’t have burned any sour cream calories so I did with out.

      Sent from my iPad

  7. Carter Bednar says:

    With the arrival of the cold season, besides cold-driven nuisance, some persons experience drawbacks regarding the general state, lack of energy and depression of unknown origin. It was scientifically ascertained that the lack of light favors the production of melatonin by the pineal gland, a hormone inducing sleep. That is why, during the cold seasons when days are shorter and the sunlight is scarce, we often feel sleepy or drowsy. Also, even during spring and summer, if the tendency is to keep most of the time indoors at home or at the office, the effect may be similar, though not as severe.”

    Most up to date piece of writing coming from our very own blog site

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