Winter, the dark.

I am not a summer girl. I never have been. Years before the heat made me sick, I would look forward to fall and the smell of fallen leaves and the way they crunched underfoot.

Summer was never for me. It was just too bright.

September and October are my favorite time of the year. I am a Boston girl and I love everything about New England autumn. I love the way the light looks icier, bluer coming through the trees. I love the feel of chilly air on my cheeks as I walk through the city. I love opening the window at night and falling asleep to the scent of frost. I love Halloween. I love watching scary movies every night while I write in my journal. I love the way bare tree branches silhouette against the swollen harvest moon.

I love all these things; but I still feel the coming dark.

I get very introspective in the fall. For the rest of the year, I look forward, move forward, but in the fall, it seems I can only think back. Festive October gives way to cold November nights, to bleak Decembers, where the horizon swallows the sun before 4:30 and everything tastes like regret. I write a lot about life, about my past. I wonder about the moments that my life hinged upon, about who I would be if I had turned differently.

I like my life. It’s just that the darkness makes the past seem so large. It unlocks in me this door to melancholy and it unfurls around me, splendid and devastating.

Depression is an organic process of mast cell disease. It is part of the disease, not a side effect of living with a chronic illness. I know that these racing thoughts and weariness with the world are from masto. I know that I’m not really hopeless on the bad days, but it doesn’t matter. By the time December is half over, I don’t even think I can tell the difference.

Tomorrow is the shortest day of the year. Then the light will return.

There is beauty in the darkness. It’s just so cold here.