Thursday, November 20, 2008

Down Days

At this time of year my spirits droop, weighed down by added hours of darkness, the preponderance of days with anemic daylight and chill breezes. Too few are the days that elevate my spirit with the joy of being alive: crisp, clear skies, bracing gusts and sunlight warming my face. It is time for a seasonal inventory of my arsenal of weapons to combat weather- and spirit-weariness.

My criteria for inventory assessment: Antidotes must be able to be started within hours if not minutes, completed in less than three days, and have a lasting effect. Bingeing on antidotes is not the answer; the point is to savor the process and extend the enjoyment of the outcome. For fellow seasonal sufferers here are some pre-tested suggestions that have worked for me.

Bake cookies for a neighbor. (Choose a different culinary strategy if your neighbor happens to be a dentist.)
Simmer up a pot of soup for a shut-in (and save some for yourself). The chicken soup “myth” is actually true!
Find out about light visors to compensate for fewer hours of natural daylight. The one I use is Bio-Brite (
Find an interactive blog site and post an opinion. Someone is reading responses.
Visit a resident of an assisted living facility. Everyone has a history; some are spellbinding.
Telephone a classmate you haven’t seen since high school. Have they lived their dreams?
Invite a sister/brother/cousin/friend to visit for a few days. (Specify length of stay.)
Write a Letter to the Editor of your hometown newspaper. Find a forum for your (printable) opinions.
Read some Ogden Nash poems.

This is only a partial list to get the creative juices flowing. Add more from your own experience. Pick one, mix with a dash of sunlight and let a smile break through.

Copyright 2008
Posted November 20, 2008