In today’s Daily Prompt, the question of how climate affects mood came up. http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/climate-control/.
I have only ever lived in what would be considered a temperate climate. Except if you consider Prince Edward Island in the winter, which I think should be classified as the arctic.
Being a naturally moody, broody sort of person, I am not at my best in constant rain – the sort where even the rain looks like it’s growing mould. Where my bones ache from the damp and nothing seems to dry out. Always accompanied by gray skies and dull gloaming light, these times are only welcome infrequently.
You may have read in earlier posts that we in the US had a particularly horrible winter.
I swear I didn’t think it would ever end. It started with an ice storm that lasted a full week and it didn’t stop there. At one point in January, DS mentioned we hadn’t had a big snow for a while and BOOM it started snowing and didn’t stop. It even snowed in April. My mood was not good. I was bored, disgruntled and fearful all at the same time. Bored because I couldn’t get outside without putting on twelve layers of clothing (it was below zero here for much of the winter) and I had to always walk in a sliding manner in boots that were too heavy for my legs. Fearful because we heat with heating oil in New England and the cost of one gallon of heating oil is more than a gallon of gas. Only my oil tank holds 280 gallons and the tank of my car around 15. No matter how you look at it, a full tank of oil is $1,000. And a full tank may not last a whole month when it is seriously cold. So the mood in winter was definitely depressed.
We came to spring here in Maine finally. It has been rainy, damp and slow to heat up. We’re supposed to have a hot, dry summer – so far the hot part is missing as is the dry. Of course, it is only May 31 so there may still be hope.
But the sun is shining. We get close to or over 70 during the day. At night the temperature drops to the 40s and night before last we had a frost warning. Living in the mountains, the temperatures vary from day to night – but not in an unpleasant way. I prefer cool nights to those with 80 degree temperatures and 70% humidity such as where I grew up.
I am not sure if it is the climate or the sun that changes my perspective on life. I think it is the greening of the trees and grass, the clear blue of the sky, the glimpse of color in the ornamental bushes and trees that speaks of renewal as does the male Cardinal I see in my yard. I know I have much more positive energy in the spring and I know it will flag in the heat of summer to be awakened only by the cool nights of fall. And then when winter rears her ugly head again, I too will need the distraction of the holidays to keep moving cheerfully from one day to the next.
I am a project oriented person. If I have a project I am thrilled. I can spend hours immersed in something and come out only for meals. In the dead of winter I can hardly motivate myself to take a nap. I see all projects as pointless. I may have something started, but I have no interest in completing it.
Is this a fact of the climate, the lack of sunlight or the change in our clocks? Whenever the time changes to EDT I find I rise earlier and stay up later. During EST, where darkness falls at 3:30 in the afternoon, I sleep as late as I can and accomplish not much of anything. My energy level is deflated, I am only a blob of misery.
During the heat of summer, where our sunshine may last several days in a row, an occasional rainy day is welcome as a respite from the burning sun. It’s as if Mother Nature gives us a vacation to recharge our batteries with a day of rest. Now if she would only get over this winter thing ………. I’m not ready to move to the south, but any more winters like that of 2014 and I might be tempted.