By RUTH MARTINEZ
For as long as I can remember, I have hated cold weather — and don’t get me started on winter and how snow makes me mad.
When I realized how much I loved the chilly weather this year instead of the warm sunny days, I felt like a new person. I even really loved the winter storm that hit Amarillo back in February.
While celebrating the arrival of cooler weather, it may not be the best season for some of us because we may suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD — a condition that I found out about a few weeks ago.
Officials define SAD as “depression associated with late autumn and winter and thought to be caused by a lack of light.”
When I read the definition, it confused me because I wasn’t feeling a hint of sadness. I honestly felt comfortable with the cold weather and I was actually happy. Until I realized that I have been struggling with my last semester of college.
I’ve been sleeping more and studying less. My last two classes have also been harder than my other classes in the past. Could I be experiencing SAD?
According to augustahealth.com, symptoms of SAD include: fatigue; feeling hopeless, guilty or worthless; feelings of death or suicide; low energy; trouble concentrating; changes in appetite; isolating oneself; changes in sleep and changes in weight.
As of right now, I have three of those symptoms. Because of this, I began looking into how to keep myself mentally healthy despite the change in season. So far, I have been doing well.
In order to overcome SAD and be a mentally healthy person, one must schedule times to be social, be active physically and mentally, let some sunshine in and most of all eat healthy because you are what you eat.
Armed with this knowledge, I am embracing fall with my arms wide-open. I am now educated about how to be a positive person through the fall and winter seasons, despite the dangers of SAD. I am excited for the holidays and cozy nights. The best part of this fall season is the fact that I will be an Amarillo College graduate this December and that is a reason to celebrate the season.