By Lara C. Andreykovich, LCA @pitt.edu
The inspiration for this week’s Town Talk began to percolate within sometime last week (hard to say since I’ve lost all sense of time) as I stared blankly out my window into the vast wilderness and thought to myself: I feel just like the weather! A tad bit grey, a splash of murky, a squish of slush…idling like the mist over the water settling amongst the pine-spattered hillside. This feeling can only be described by two words: winter doldrums. According to adventishealthcare.com, the “winter doldrums” refers to experiencing feelings of sadness and lethargy during the winter season.
Believing that I couldn’t possibly be the only one going through the winter doldrums, I picked myself up off the sofa and went out to observe first-hand how my friends in the surrounding communities were coping with the bleakness. My question: What do you do to beat the winter dol “drums”? I hoped the feedback I received would shine a positive light on a dreary subject.
Here are some of the comforting insights I gathered from three generations of interview subjects:
·Eating comfort food like nachos, steamed veggies, meatloaf, and drinking? lots and lots of soup, as well as other warmth-giving potions
·Basking in the sunlight for a little while, even if it means sitting inside and putting your face close to the window to catch one ray!
·Playing Go Fish and Old Maid with the family
·Ice-skating on the pond with friends
·Practicing some yoga
·Volunteering to help out the community
·Participating in 4-H (hands, heart, head, and health) activities
·Snuggling up with a blanket and bingeing on Netflix series
·Cuddling with pups and kitties while snuggling with a blanket and bingeing on Netflix series…and movies
·Playing Candy Crush
·Weather permitting, spontaneously taking a drive to some unfamiliar destination
·Taking the buggy out with my husband and discovering the wonders of nature
·Being so busy with the kids, there’s no time to be depressed
*Settling down with a good book, whether hard, soft, or virtual cover (Kindle) was the most frequent response.
Instead of descending into the depths of my own sea of frigid thoughts, my icy reflections thawed, as I pondered what my fellow townsfolk offered as far as beating the winter dol “drums”. Once again, my fellow community members did not disappoint; just as they have done confronting the challenges of education during Covid, they are choosing to face the frosty face of winter with resilience, tenacity, and true grit. I can confidently assert: It is possible to beat the winter dol “drums”.