Last week, I encountered a new psych term. It's not new, but I just hadn't heard of it before. It's called seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
This term came up in an online support group I am part of. Some of its members (myself included) have been posting that they've been feeling down lately. My friend Pam has been feeling down, too. Then, a member of the said online group posted that it may be because of SAD.
I typed it on Google and I found out that SAD is "sometimes known as winter depression."* One of the theories surrounding SAD says that "a lack of sunlight may lead to lower serotonin levels, which is linked to feelings of depression."
The rainy season is here, hence the lack of sunlight, and we've had several downpours the past week. Maybe this is why Pam and I have been feeling down since last week. Getting out of bed entails a lot of effort, and there are moments when we wonder how we can get through our day.
I have a lot of things on my mind right now, and SAD is only making things worse. I feel tired even if I got enough sleep the previous night. I walk around absentmindedly. I forget things that came up in my mind like couple of seconds ago. It's as if I am preoccupied and I am surrounded by gray clouds everywhere I go.
I know there's an end to this. I am scheduled to see my psychiatrist Dr. G soon. I'll tell her everything, like I always do. I'll ask her about SAD, and if what I've been feeling is a result of that. I'll sit on the couch in her clinic, where I feel safe from everything---even from my own thoughts and my own dark clouds.
But when I see her, I will not look forward to having the dosage of my medicines lowered. I know I am not yet ready. I can feel it. So I'll be honest with her. But I do wish that she wouldn't think that I am regressing or having a relapse. I am not. I just need a little bit more time. Maybe in a couple of months, we can have my dosage lowered. Or better yet, have one of my meds removed from my daily intake completely.
For now, I will just go back to my daily routines, be kind to myself, and hope for the best.
*Read about seasonal affective disorder here.