I’m convinced, or maybe desperately hopeful is the right term, that a few days in a row of good weather will burn my bad mood away like morning fog, but holy shit have we ever been shortchanged on anything resembling a spring here in Seattle. We seem to get maybe one day of sunshine every week and a half or so, then kerblam, it’s back to overcast skies and chilly temperatures. I looked up the symptoms for Seasonal Affective Disorder—you know, SAD, as in sad face, call the wahmbulance—and nodded in grim recognition.

Difficulty waking up in the morning? Check. Craving for carbohydrates? If that means “all-encompassing need to cram sugary/starchy foods in my complain-hole 24 hours a day”, then CHECK. Lack of energy? Hang on, let me just swill the last of this Red Bull . . . check. Difficulty concentrating? Wait, huh? Oh I mean check.

Dude! I’m totally SAD. The most privileged of the depressions: “Oh, I’m sad about clouds.” It’s like a Stuff White People Are Sad About disease.

In truth I’m in a tail-chasing mode about a number of things lately, but I swear the sun took my coping skills when it decided to disappear for half of May and all of fucking June. When you live in the Northwest you know you’re in for a long rainy season every year, but the reason we don’t all hurl ourselves from bridges is because eventually it gets NICE again. That’s how it’s supposed to work, anyway.

We had a break in the rain on Friday and while JB was at work and the boys were at school I headed for the woods in hopes of clearing some of the cruft from my brain. I spent three hours hiking around and exploring new trails and I didn’t see another soul while I was out there. It was pretty much exactly what I needed.

woods1
woods2
woods7
woods4
woods5
woods9
woods8
woods6

Here’s hoping the sun comes back again soon. I’m sick of being SAD. Also, my wardrobe budget can’t afford for me to keep eating these here medicinal cookies.

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Erin
11 years ago

I’m right there with you. I just got home from 4 days in sunny Arizona and I did not want to come home. I think if the weather doesn’t get its act together soon, there is going to be a mass exodus from the Seattle area. If things don’t improve soon (read: within the next week) I may lead the way.

Sunny
Sunny
11 years ago

Boy, amen to that! We leave in Eastern Washington, Tri Cities, to be somewhat-exact. We’re supposed to have the desert climate, tumbleweed and 80 degree temps right now. I’m supposed to be rubbing my Western WA family’s nose in the warm weather. Instead? We have mushrooms in the fucking lawn, rain every day and gray skies. This is bullshit. If I wanted this weather, I’d be back in Western WA and have a shit-load better opportunities for another SAD cure- medicinal shopping!!

Kristin
Kristin
11 years ago

I think I get SAD, too. I’ve noticed that I get really tired on rainy days and don’t want to go anywhere. Kind of like a weird sort of depression. Luckily, I live in a sunny state. I love the Seattle area and thought living there would be fun, but I’m not sure I would be able to stand the weather (fun for awhile, but not forever).

Kristin
Kristin
11 years ago

Oh, and I meant to say that I love the pictures from your hike! Beautiful!

Erika
Erika
11 years ago

I’m sorry but I have to say, sun is overrated when you have 100 degree F with 80% humidity. Uggggghhh!

Locusts and Wild Honey
11 years ago

That was genius of you to go to the woods. They say that humans disconnected from nature get sick more often. The perfect balm.

Btw, if you see the sun, can you ask it to stop by San Francisco? We miss her too.

marie
11 years ago

Second to Erika.

What’s the point of sun when stepping outside makes you gasp like a fish. Ironic, because, oh the humidity!

Am I supposed to stare longingly out the window, wishing for drizzly overcasts days so I can run errands without the joyous accompaniment of excessive sweat? And how am I to keep up an exercise regimen in all of this? Riiight.

olga
olga
11 years ago

Agreed. I’m getting not just SAD, but also borderline plus-sized (which is such a demeaning term), and on Wednesday I’m supposed to be wearing a dress for the first time ever as I graduate university.

On the other hand, you are awesome. Even when seasonally affected. Your motivation, kindness, wisdom, and beauty really inspire me. Honestly.

Eric's Mommy
Eric's Mommy
11 years ago

Beautiful pictures from your hike. I love New England but a lot of your pictures make me want to move out there.

Fi
Fi
11 years ago

I live in England, where we are SAD *all year round* – sigh. Hope sunshine, lollipops & rainbows are all with you soon. ox

Sara
Sara
11 years ago

Kristin, having low energy on rainy days isn’t SAD. I recommend reading up on what SAD really is.

I’m actually a little offended by the “lol what a silly ~disease~” attitude in Sundry’s post. SAD is a real mental illness and can trigger serious, major depression. Most people can shake it off once spring arrives but for those who can’t, it’s truly debilitating. Dismissing it as nothing more than privilege is mentalism, plain and simple. And that, actually, is you showing your privilege.

JudithNYC
JudithNYC
11 years ago

Not that she needs defending, but I think Linda’s tone is motivated by the fact that she does not like feeling that way. I am bipolar and EXTREMELY affected by dark, sunless days and sometimes I talk like it’s just me being a spineless jerk. By the way, I am a third-world native, no privilege whatsoever. I just do not like being at the mercy of my stupidly wacked brain chemichals and that deprecating, dismissive tone is one of the ways I cope.

Wink
11 years ago

Sara: recommended reading on what a SOH, “sense of humor”, is.

“All and Sundry”

Amanda
11 years ago

Ugh! I have the SAD too.. and live in Vancouver (BC not yours) so we’ve had the exact same dismal spring.

My cycle goes = I feel like crap. I should exercise or not eat candy… but why bother? Lets just eat some more candy and lay here instead. Whyyy do I feel like craaaap?

JChevais
11 years ago

Feel your pain. I live in France (near Paris) and the weather is so bad in the South that HOUSES are being swept away by all this stupid rain. WHEN will it end? Tomorrow is the first day of summer. Why am I wearing a ski jacket outside? (or inside for that matter! I am NOT turning the heating back on)

Crazy. Paris is usually really grey (it ain’t called The Grey Lady for nothing), but this is freaking ridiculous.

What the hell is mentalism?

wendy
11 years ago

I’m with you in this. Wtf spring? Like Sunny I’m over here on the Eastern aka “red” side if the state where it’s supposed to be all dry and uuuuh desert like. Liars! Apparently we got a monsoon season?

Ashley, the Accidental Olympain

OMG I’m so SAD it’s actually quite funny.

My boyfriend’s parents are visiting us in Olympia this weekend and while I stood in the POURING rain on Saturday watching an airshow I was moments
from just laying down on the ground and giving up on life.

Someone tell me the sun is coming back soon.

Sonia
Sonia
11 years ago

Ugh. I had to wipe the Juanita’s tortilla chip residue off of my fingers before I could type. (Have you tried them? I SWEAR they are laced with CRACK!) I’m in a carb coma from all of the shoveling into the pie-hole, and I’m 100% blaming this stoooopid ass weather. My husband was reading off stats this morning about how this is the worst June in recent….something something….too much rain and low temps. I couldn’t concentrate long enough to absorb what he was saying. I *know* that working out will make me feel better, and yet…. SO. I get where you’re coming from, and good for you for getting up and out into the woods. I’ll be sitting here on the couch looking at the pretty pictures you took. Eating Juanita’s chips and pico de gallo.

Shin Ae
11 years ago

I know that SAD. I get it, too. These last couple years, summer hasn’t quite cured me as it used to do. Even on the hottest, stickiest Mid-Atlantic summer days, winter hangs over my head. I need to move. Although not to where you are. Your photographs are so beautiful but they also gave me the beginnings of a panic attack…all that DAMP, oh my!

Beth
11 years ago

The only thing I hate about living in New England is the SAD I get every winter, when we barely see a patch of weak, pale yellow sun for MONTHS. I’m starting to think one of those UV lamps is in order.

MotherGooseAmy
MotherGooseAmy
11 years ago

Here is something to be HAPPY about… it looks like THAT where you live. You can just hike around and take gorgeous photos IN YOUR BACKYARD.

Not the same here in Michigan. Although, we went boating today and it was sunny :P

Seriously though, sorry you are SAD. Hopefully summer will make up for the lackluster spring.

Holly
Holly
11 years ago

Take Vitamin D supplements. I went to the Dr with the same symptoms and she did blood tests – they said I was Vitamin D deficient. I’ve been taking supplements for a few weeks now and it makes a HUGE difference. Seriously – I don’t feel nearly as “blue” as I did before the supplements. I even sleep better, which is probably partly responsible for the improved mood too. I think especially in the Pacific Northwest we have to be careful with the Vitamin D intake. King 5 had a news story about it last week too which also said that Vitamin D supplements help with sleep, modd, and muscle aches. Give the Vitamins a try!

Lesley
Lesley
11 years ago

Carrot cake with cream cheese icing is good for SAD.

Agree with Holly on the D. I live in Vancouver and my doc has me on 5 grams a day.

I love all the photos but especially the first and last. (You’re a brave woman going into the woods alone. I’m too freaked out by my scary imagination to do that.)

lindsay
11 years ago

Love the pics…. I’m going to go walk in suburbia down a road in the midst of repaving with lots of orange signs and repaving smells….each of us with our own cross to bear and stuff ;-) Feel better! Hope tomorrow is as good as your last Monday!

Jennifer
Jennifer
11 years ago

So true about how we suffer through this weather all winter and we just tough it out. BUT when May and especially June arrive, we expect to finally get the good stuff. Can’t believe how dismal it’s been. I kept a high level of optimism all the way up to, oh, about June 10th then I snapped. Stay outta my way!!!

Tricia
11 years ago

I’m with Erika, way up there on the comments list. Triple digits, humidity, and every-morning sunscreen applications: ugh.

When I visited SEA and parts north a month ago, I could only marvel at the green green green beauty. And no wind.

Did I mention: no wind?

Here? Husby just walked in to announce “more storms”. We are already in a tornado watch.

I love gray and snow and quiet winter…

Maria
11 years ago

That makes me want to go tromping off into the woods right this second. How cool.

I can’t even conceive of chilly weather in June. This “winter” in Florida almost killed me, so I can sympathize with the SADface. I hope more sunny days come your way soon, you deserve it man.

.303 Bookworm
.303 Bookworm
11 years ago

Summer here in Wellington NZ was (because it was MONTHS ago – we’re into winter here now, well it was really lovely. Hot, sunny, blue skies with not a cloud in sight. I remember it well, it was a Tuesday.

And then reality came back.

:P

Holly
Holly
11 years ago

@Tricia – Did you hear about the wind storm we had a few years ago – over 1 million homes without power for upwards of 10 days. Tornado force winds through a major metropolitan area – we had light crews imported from all over the country to put our power lines back up. We also had the Clinton Inauguration Day storm that knocked power out all over Western Washington for more than a week. We *definitely* get our wind out here – just at a different time of year. I *heart* the PNW. :)

Belle
Belle
11 years ago

I also take Vit D supplements on order from ortho doctor – I said, well hell….haven’t seen the sun in months so d’uh of course I’m low. Can’t tell if it’s helped the SAD because we actually have had sun for a couple of months now. Ok, on and off, but better than nothin’!

While the woods look beautiful, I do hope you are telling someone when you go and when to expect you back. I’m with Lesley above – you can never be too cautious when by yourself. (I’m too chicken to even take a walk in my subdivision by myself. Ha.)

Victoria
11 years ago

Dude, I know. Like, we’re used to rain and stuff, but NOT ALL DAMN SPRING LONG!

Kristin
11 years ago

I just read this aloud to Corey and he nodded in grim agreement. Our weather system in Van is pretty much exactly the same as yours there and we’re totally effed up here too.

I’m convinced July will make up for asshole June.

Donna
Donna
11 years ago

I definitely need to move, I love the rain, and would like it if it was cold and rained every day.
Unlike most people with metal in their bodies, I feel better when it is cold than when it is hot. Feels like the metal tightens up and is sturdier or something. And I love the rain, my hair grows, my complexion gets gorgeous, and my sinus’ even behave…
Got a spare bedroom? The photos were awesome, I would have loved to gone on your hike with you!
And Sara? Obviously you need one of those lamps to cheer you up and make you less cranky…it’s called a sense of humor. Get one mmkay?

Sara
11 years ago

Love the pictures…we don’t have anything that pretty here!

Christina
11 years ago

I tried D3 this past winter and OMG the difference was incredible. Try it!! It totally helped or it has the placebo accept and TOTALLY helped (lala lala I do not want to hear if it does not work for you ;)

Talked to Mom yesterday who lives in your area and she said it is maddening how bad the Spring has been there. I think she said dreary like 10 times in a 2 minute span. Suckage. She works in Mt Vernon and said the sun is always shining there even though it is an armpit but I gathered she is glad she gets to go there when the weather is bad closer to the city.

Jennifer
Jennifer
11 years ago

I can remotely relate…I get the same way when we get a week-straight of cloudy days. And that’s usually the most we ever get here in Texas! So, I can’t IMAGINE dealing with it for months on end – I would totally hurl myself from a bridge. Not that I’m encouraging you to, mind you. And I will probably feel like hurling my 7-month-pregnant self off a bridge after our 30th straight day of 100+ degree temps that will likely fall around mid to end July!

My sister is in the Navy in Bremerton and is coming for a visit this weekend. When I asked her what she’d like to do while she was here, her exact words were “live in your pool in the sun….the WHOLE time I’m there”. So, we will be spending a week in the 100-degree temps, soaking up some rays this week!

On a positive note regarding WA – look at those fantastic photo opps – you don’t get anything remotely that beautiful and tranquil where I live! Grass is always greener, I guess….

perl
perl
11 years ago

“Dude! I’m totally SAD. The most privileged of the depressions: “Oh, I’m sad about clouds.” It’s like a Stuff White People Are Sad About disease.” – that is the funniest thing I’ve heard in awhile. Brilliant. The weather is the same here in Corvallis. It sure doesn’t feel like summer.

Anyway, been meaning to tell you that I (random internet person) think of you every night when I read the new Christopher Moore book because you totally have to read it. It’s hilarious.

Kami
11 years ago

I have it too. Get a lamp and some vitamin D supplements. It helps. For realz.

Nicole
Nicole
11 years ago

Sorry to hear that you are SAD. I used to live in Boston and would really struggle in the Spring.

I’m a dietitian and I totally agree with the comments about Vitamin D. There are studies that show a link between Vitamin D deficiency (which is way more common than we ever thought) and symptoms of depression. It’s important though to get your 25-OH D3 level checked by your physician first and then when you start supplementing make sure you get levels re-checked every 6 months or so. Vitamin D can be toxic so you don’t want to over do it.

victoria
victoria
11 years ago

Yesterday, the darkest June day in Seattle’s recorded history, I thought, if I hate yet another cold wet weekend day, what about poor Linda, cooped up in her house with two stir-crazy manic little boys?

mixette
mixette
11 years ago

I also have Erika’s weather. SATT season (Sweaty All The Time.)

Kathy at Wellness Roadtrip

Wow…that hike would have done it for me. I’m in Pittsburgh and I’m pretty sure we rank right up there with Seattle in cloud coverage. But unlike you…we don’t have those vistas to escape to…just some old steel mills to gander upon. Okay…and some pretty rivers.

Mary
Mary
11 years ago

Where is this hiking place? I live in the Seattle area too… It looks purty! (Unless it is your secret hiking place, never to be shared with others… :))

Leslie
11 years ago

I’m your neighbor in Oregon and I agree – this sunless summer shit is for the birds!!

Redbecca
Redbecca
11 years ago

If Vit D doesn’t work, and if you have other random stuff going on (monthly cycles gone long and wonky?) have your thyroid checked.

LUV the pictures. I miss the West Coast, rain and all!

Steph
11 years ago

I am 100% with you there. I actually think we were transplanted to Seattle when we weren’t looking. Our weather is horrendous and my mood is awful. We’ve had a few sunny days now but the rain comes in the afternoon without fail. I hate this so much!! Spring is usually my favorite season after a long Wyoming Winter but not this year.

wordygirl
11 years ago

Our weather on Vancouver Island has been the exact same. And you’re right, I can hold it together for the long cold winter, but come May, IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE NICE OUTSIDE. I want a refund on the past two months’ worth of crap weather.

Frannie
Frannie
11 years ago

I’m in Las Vegas right now and just hiked near Lake Mead and Red Rock. It was nice just hearing silence, mountains and no people around. If that doesn’t get rid of my Orlando SAD, I’m pretty damn sure it’ll be dried out by the time I leave in a week. BTW, Seattle looks gorgeous.