Summer Affective Disorder

Last summer, I felt happy and kept busy. This summer, I find myself struggling. I’d like to blame it on the stupidly early mornings I’ve been (needlessly) putting myself through in order to practice with the Good Doc and to be with the “sangha” (as in Yiddish, there simply IS no adequate English equivalent that holds the same subtle meaning).

But today, as I waited for the 6:49 am train to the city, wearing long pants and lonh sleeves, a chiffon scarf draped around my hips, sniffing the golden scent of the first signs of autumn in the air, I realized that last summer was really just a fluke.

See, I don’t like summer. Never have. I crave structure, and summer has no structural imperative. Sure, I can make myself follow a train schedule and a shala schedule, but when I know it is merely arbitrary, that in fact I have all day to do whatever I want and could practice from two to four if I want to do so, then the imperative is absent. There is structure, but there is nothing requiring me to adhere to it.

Without structure, I am left to make the hard decisions about what to do with my day. And this is where it all goes to hell.

If I practice early, I feel resentful that I did so when I didn’t need to. If I dont’, I feel guilty that I wasted the morning.

Ah, fall, when just the scent and the snap in the air, when the colors of trees, create a reflex within me, a reflex of productivity. And then the structure of the schoolday forces me to get things done.

Even when I don’t get things done, at least it is clear what I was missing.

Off to practice…

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3 Responses to Summer Affective Disorder

  1. Carl says:

    Can you not dedicate yourself to a scheduled activity to establish the structure you’re talking about? Like volunteering for a youth program or something like that?

  2. Yoga Chickie says:

    actually, i just signed up to volunteer at a school for troubled girls. 🙂

    i see you are catching up with your reading!

  3. Carl says:

    I just did a search of your blog for the word “volunteer” and the most recent post containing the verb was entered this past March. That means I haven’t missed anything, though I did skip a few posts here and there. I keep up though!

    Oh, and you did mention back in March that you want us to hold you accountable. You said you’d volunteer for Habitat for Humanity. How did that go? I hope you will focus more of your energy in your work at the school for troubled girls.

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