And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair. ~ Kahlil Gibran

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Depression vs. SAD

Just one more, and then I promise to shut up on the subject for a while.

Today Dad and I took Little Sprout for a walk up to the post office. Dad said the round trip is just over 1/4 mile, and Little Sprout made it almost the whole way. Pretty good for someone whose legs are so little. She was giggling madly the whole way, and intent on exploring all the side roads and little things she saw lying on the sidewalk.

Amazingly, I feel about 100% better than I did this morning when I left work. It makes me much of my "depression" is really seasonal? How much of my issue is the enforced confinement of MN winters? I can't believe how much just that little bit of fresh air lifted my spirits.

Basically, I have come to the conclusion that no matter what house we end up getting, I am going to have to make it a priority to have a greenhouse or a garden room of some kind. A place that I can keep green growing things throughout the winter months.

I have never really thought about it seriously before, because though I am a fair to decent gardener outside I seem to kill all houseplants unfortunate enough to come into contact with me.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if something so simple could "fix" me? It wouldn't even have to be anything elaborate, just a room big enough for me to stick a chair in and outfit with full spectrum lights and lots of potted plants. I could sit in there and do my needlepoint or read for a while every day and be normal.

It sounds too good to be true, but I am willing to try anything twice....


brad said...

As I was reading this I was thinking what you wrote at the end: full-spectrum lights.

Perhaps it will work. It's probably worth trying. Some people find that taking Vit D helps with mood because they are used to having it in their systems from the sun and don't get it in the winter.

Lisa said...

I think you may be on to something here! I kill houseplants off in droves too, so I stopped trying. I think it has to do with the dry heat in the winter, blah, blah, blah, but really... plants aren't meant to live indoors all the time! (That's my story and I'm sticking to it!)

I spent a year in college up in Montreal, freezing my Hawaiian *ss off and feeling depressed. I blew all of my meager student money on shelving and houseplants and did my best to keep them going. It really helped me! I don't know how the plants felt about it, but just walking in and seeing a *living* thing was wonderful!

I like that you'll try anything twice! Me too! Milk has vitamin D in it too, so, if the sun won't shine, make a milkshake! Boy, I'm really full of it today, aren't I?

jenny said...

With my houseplants, I don't know why yours don't make it, but for me, I make mondays the day I water my plants. I help fight the monday blahs by inhaling the scent of the dirt when the water hits it and it makes me feel good about the rest of the day. I have about 10 houseplants and they all do pretty well. The girls each have their own plant and they water those with my supervision.

I'm glad that walk to the post office perked you both up! Temps here are hovering in the 50's and I am sending the kids out today for a little bit of fresh air and play time.

RuthieJ said...

An all-season sunroom filled with plants.....yeah, that oughta do it. I have a master gardener friend who has a room like that filled with all her orchids. She goes away for a couple weeks each winter and pays me to come in and water them for her. It's a wonderful place! But there are lots of houseplants that are pretty hardy too--at least several varieties that I haven't managed to kill off yet.
I hope you find such a place, Barefoot!

paul maurice martin said...

It's simple but you're definitely on to something. Part of being depressed, of course, is that you don't feel like doing much of anything, much less something as vigorous as taking a walk, jog, or bike ride. But aerobic activity does have an immediate mood-elevating affect, so if you can make something along those lines part of your routine, that's a good thing.

When I used to jog, some runs felt great - like I could go on forever - and some not. But after a run, however it went, I always felt better than before.