“Take two hours of sunlight and call me in the morning”

Singin' the gray world blues...

The above photo depicts today.  Gray.  Clouds.  No illumination.  No shadows.  No sunlight.

Last winter I wrote a blog post called “I shot six holes in my freezer” referring to Jimmy Buffet’s song “Boat Drinks”.  It actually alluded to a condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder which affects many sun-deprived souls here in the Northern Hemisphere.  The song suggests we might want to head to the tropics for a vacation.  (Although, usually, it takes until March before people get “cabin fever” really bad around here.)

Sunlight, as we dark-day-dwellers soon realize, is good for the soul.

Two "married" trees--in sunlight

The above photo depicts this weekend.  Yay!!  We enjoyed sunlight.  Suddenly the skies beamed bright blue for one of the few times this month.  You could see people smiling.  Gloomy eyes disappeared; bright eyes reappeared.

You can feel kind of…gray…and never realize that the lack of sun is having an effect.  Until the sun returns to shine upon the snowy earth and your mood suddenly lightens and your step quickens and you’re inexplicably happy once again.

Oh! Sunlight even makes roof ice look spectacular.

Last winter I wrote an artistic piece of writing about a person suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).  Even though I’ve only had passing challenges with lack of sunlight, people seemed amazed at the way the words revealed the pain and suffering experienced by people in the midst of deep seasonal depression.  People kept saying, “But you must have experienced depression to write this way.”

Not really.  But I can imagine and feel the depression which sinks into dim recesses of our human soul, penetrating so deeply that one feels no way out into sunlight…

Prickly! Yes, burdock.

Some people (including my dad–HI, DAD!)  swear by Vitamin D3.  He suggests we all take supplements, especially those of us in sunlight-starved climates.  Barry takes his pill every day.  I…ahem…swallow one when I remember.   (Ooops, Barry suggests I correct a possible misinterpretation.  He takes his Vitamin D3 to help prevent the flu.  He LIKES gray dismal days.  Go figure.)

Last winter, spending so much time outdoors, I felt very little Seasonal Affective Disorder.  Perhaps the time tramping in the woods, creatively looking for new photos and interesting sights, balanced the lack of sunlight.  Perhaps spending time outdoors is the remedy, whether than sun shines forth or not.

Homemade chokecherry wine. Thank you!

Then again, Barry brought home a bottle of homemade chokecherry wine the other night.  If we have too many days of gray, we may just have to break open that bottle from Rene’s Winery. 

I’ll just try not to write a blog after THAT evening.  🙂

In the meantime, the minute you see that sun:  GET OUTSIDE!  Doctor’s orders.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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17 Responses to “Take two hours of sunlight and call me in the morning”

  1. Sue says:

    OMG! Chokecherry wine!!

    Every year when I was a kid my dad would take us for a ride in the station wagon….on the hunt for chokecherries. After we picked our buckets and buckets and buckets full, he’s pour them all into a nice new garbage can in the kitchen…wash down our legs and feet and then stick us in the can to stomp those cherries! LOL

    He made the best dry wine and his buddy made the best sweet. Little did he know that when we got older we would pilfer a bottle to share with our friends.

    I didn’t know there was a winery that made it for real!

    Someday….someday soon…..I’ll have to try some.

    🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Dear Sue, if you were a little closer we would HAVE to share this chokecherry wine with you. I love the story of you kids in the kitchen stomping on those cherries to make wine! That is so great. (Actually, it’s not a real winery…the bottle came from our friend Rene. She makes it herself. I don’t know if she has anyone stomp on the cherries with bare feet and legs though!)

  2. Mom and Dad says:

    Hi Kathy—-I’d like to have a glass of that Red Chokecherry Wine with my 1000 mg of Vitamin D3. Dad

    • Kathy says:

      Dear Dad, darn it, I wish you could have some, too. So it’s 1000 mg of Vitamin D, is it? I have reported that to Barry and he’s upping his dose…

  3. Dawn says:

    You make people smile even when there isn’t any sun!

  4. Dawn says:

    We had warmth and sunlight today too. It was a blessing. I actually weeded in the garden.

    You are so correct about being outside during the winter. I hate being stuck indoors all winter at work – worse yet in an office with no windows. Yuck.

    • Kathy says:

      You can weed in your garden? That is indeed a novel thought in January…I am SO sorry you’re stuck in an office with no windows. That must be dismal. More dismal than gray sky is…not seeing the sky at all. I am glad you can weed in warmth and sunlight.

  5. Cindy Lou says:

    On my walk yesterday, all I could see at first was gray flannel but on the return trip – I started noticing all the different shades of color in the ‘gray’ clouds…..purple, navy, violet…..beautiful in its own subtle way.

    • Kathy says:

      Cindy, I have thought of your comment all day. May have to do a study of those subtle shades of color in the gray clouds. If the camera would pick them up. Because you are so right. The world of gray up here in the UP makes us see subtle beauty etched in black and white and gray.

  6. p.j. grath says:

    So glad you had a sunny weekend, Kathy. We are having blue skies here on the Gulf Coast of Florida this morning, after a “cold” night down in the 40’s, and we are feeling pretty cheery. Hope you can maintain good spirits through the northern winter. I’m sure you will!

    • Kathy says:

      Pamela, I am delighted to hear that you made it to the Gulf Coast of Florida! Hopefully your weather will warm up and you will settle into your “home away from home” for the winter.

  7. Gerry says:

    I agree that the way to deal with northern winters is to get out into the day and meet Winter on its own terms–armed, of course, with wool socks, YakTrax, and a couple of bouncy dogs. I think it helps, too, to spend some quality indoor time with friends. Mush on over to the neighbor’s house. Wear bright colors. Bake cookies. (OK, not too many cookies, or you will be depressed about not fitting into your favorite pants and will grouse about everything under the sun.) And this is definitely the time of year to read a book set in an insufferably hot climate, replete with humidity and reptiles or sand and thirst, depending.

    • Kathy says:

      Gerry, you are so lucky to have your dogs! Really. I think folks with dogs are forced to meet with Winter on its terms. They have to. But I love all your other suggestions too. You just reminded me–I DID bake cookies today. Must go put that in the other just-written blog. Never thought of reading books set in insufferably hot climates. Just the thing!

  8. hyhowellness says:

    Let sunshine exist in your faith and spirit and I believe you’ll be okay 🙂

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