Darkness

Autumn
Image by Blakkos via Flickr

In spite of living in sunny Florida, when the days of the autumn equinox draw closer, even we can’t escape the shorter days and the longer nights that arrive with it.

Even though the temperatures are still reaching into the mid to high 80s these early days of October, the sun is hanging lower in the sky and a perceptible shift has been in the atmosphere for a few weeks now.  Just this past weekend, we had the first change in our evening temperatures and the humidity has dropped markedly.  It’s no longer stifling muggy when the air hits you as you step outside.  It’s been a long time coming and very welcomed.

And there’s another feeling that comes with it for me too though–one of loss, of sorrow and despair that permeates me when the cool weather arrives.  Even though, for the most part, our fall and winter months come with bright, sunshiny days–I can still be affected by a pervasive feeling of anxiety that sweeps over me.  So it can’t be blamed on Seasonal Affective  Disorder (SAD).

I feel it is tied in with my life growing up in a problematic home ruled by alcohol.  We were thrust together even more closely than usual during the cold months and it was an especially difficult time for me.  So I believe, still to this day, I am feeling those days– imprinted in my DNA–emerging most often on the darkest and most bitter, cold days that will soon be approaching–reminding me.

Those feelings have lessened their grip as I’ve grown older, perhaps I’ve let go of and put behind me much of that time–but still I notice and feel their presence.

 My entry for Monday Morning Writing Prompt:  Darkness  http://liv2write2day.wordpress.com/2011/10/02/monday-morning-writing-prompt-darkness/

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21 Comments

  1. It’s a tripple wammy, isn’t it? Holding you in metta, Gayle. And that’s for the reminder. I always welcome fall and winter and forget some people have SAD and it’s no fun for them.

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    • It used to be worse–so I’m making progress! I thought only people who lived in dark climates (people who don’t get enough sunshine) could suffer from SAD–maybe not so.

      I appreciate your metta for me, Jamie. You’re the best!

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  2. Interesting connection between our past life experiences and how things like the seasons affect us. Thank you for sharing your story and for linking to MMWP.

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    • Yes, it is. When I was younger–the cold season really affected me greatly. I’m happy that it’s not as bad as it once was.

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  3. Even though I welcome the cooler weather and changing of the season, I, too, feel a certain sadness and anxiety when the colder weather comes. I think mine is more tied to lack of sun, as it seems to set in when the days grow shorter and I spend more time indoors. We too often forget how tied we humans are to our surroundings.

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    • I think you’re right too. We are tied closely to our surroundings and circumstances–but often we don’t notice.

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  4. This is such a personal glimpse into what the darkness brings to your current life. It’s not just the feelings of the “now”; it’s the feelings of the “then.” I understand and send you light into your heart…

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    • The two are so intertwined with me–I can’t seem to experience the colder season without these feelings.

      So grateful to you for the light sent my way. Thank you, Lorna.

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  5. i know what you are talking about. i feel this way when i cant see sun for days due to clouds. which happens here once in a while, though it was a regular affair a couple of years back.

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    • It seems to be that season in particular that makes me feel more anxious. And mostly we have very sunny days even throughout our winters–it has something to do with the cold and the shorter days of sunlight.

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      • that can be the reason. the shorter span of day, as we dont have such phenomenon i cant comment.

        but quickly gathering darkness of winter evenings bore me for sure. 🙂

        still cant post comment on soulbro’s blog, nor can his other regular reader mieke.

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        • Your days don’t fluctuate with the seasons?

          We have Daylight Savings Time that goes on and off through the year to change our time forward or backward an hour. You’ve probably heard of this before–I’m guessing. We have to change our clocks twice a year to accommodate it–spring and fall. An hour gets added in the spring and summer so our days are very long–lasting almost until 9PM here. I love the long days–do not enjoy the short ones.

          I spoke to Soulbro last night for awhile. He knows about the problem but doesn’t know why it’s happening. I hope Blogger and Blogspot are working on the problem–it’s been going on a while now.

          Still haven’t received a letter from you, Trisha. I’m disappointed but maybe it will still show up some day. I’m hoping.

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          • well, i believe that letter will reach by your next birthday. so you see why i love indian postal department so much?

            if only the courier companies become a little more pocket friendly. may be, next time i will contact a courier company and ask him if they will deliver without phone number.

            thanks for talking with soulbro. you are very sweet. there is another everyday reader of soulbro, her comments have vanished too thats why i was a bit relieved that the problem is not with my connection/service provider.

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          • I will be happy to furnish you with a phone number if you think it would be relatively secure to do so if you should want to try again in the future. Let me know.

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        • i certainly am going to send again. i am not the one who gives up easily. if its alright for you then the phone number will be fabulous, in that case i will be able to courier the letter, that will atleast increase the chances of delivery.

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  6. Emotionally powerful!

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  7. I am so very sorry that you have had to deal with that burden. Alcoholism affects too many, and when it affects children, it is especially tragic. I experienced something similar growing up and I do not think it can ever be completely exorcised – how could it, if it was such an integral part of life for so long?

    That being said, it is good to know your “triggers”, so to speak. I hope that you are able to turn the negatives into positives, my friend. It takes effort and awareness, but it CAN be done. There can be comfort in the darkness, even the darkness of such horrible memories – accept that they are past and will not hurt you now. It cannot be changed, but it does not have to dictate your future, unless you allow it.

    I’m sorry…do not mean to come across as ‘preachy’. Your post triggered empathy and having fought the same type of battle for a long time, I only wanted to share hope with you that it CAN get better. Not 100%, never that, I don’t think. But definitely better. Brightest of blessings and warm hugs to you, Gayle. Even in the short days and darkness, you have friends who care. 🙂 ❤ xox

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    • A very good thing that has helped me are my brothers and sisters who went through it with me. We understand the deep sorrow in each other and have been a very good support system.

      You did not sound preachy–I’m glad to have you share with me, Corina. I appreciate that empathy–it feels very nice–thank you. Well, at my age, I doubt that I will be free of the pain but I can learn to live with it and I’m definitely doing better.

      I’m very grateful for my wonderful friends who care–what a blessing! 😉
      Thank you friend! What a sweet heart you are… xoxo

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