Here Comes the Sun

John McManamy Health Guide
  • It couldn’t have come at a worse time. Several days into my depression, the rains came. One day. Two days. Eight days in all … eight friggin’ days with no sun. To make matters worse, my immune system gave out on me and I came down with a cold. Talk about the perfect storm. It was raining inside my head. It was raining inside my body. It was raining outside.

    Please, sun, I begged. Show your face. Then all the rain would go away.

    No such luck.

    Back in the mid-1970s I spent a year in Vancouver. I was naïve. I had no idea back then that the Pacific Northwest is not part of the solar system. I didn’t know what hit me. Those were the dark ages. Researchers had yet to connect mood to weather. Winter depression and seasonal affective disorder were unknown to medical science. But it was more than that. Cold northern winters, I can stand. By contrast, the Vancouver winter was temperate. The catch was the clouds dropped to treetop level, totally blotting out the sun for weeks at a time, and that this particular winter lasted 12 months.
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    Now, I was experiencing Vancouver in New Jersey. With depression, each day is like a month. One month, two months. The rains kept coming. On the eighth day, I managed to pack myself into a bus to attend a family function in Connecticut. I was scintillating company that night at my mother’s.

    On the ninth day, on the way to the family event, the sun made a cameo appearance. Sun! Then the sun stayed out longer. Encore! At the function, I found a seat behind my 12-year-old nephew and we drew cartoons together. I found myself laughing at our absurd creations. I was enjoying myself. I was having fun.

    I was going to make it.

Published On: October 21, 2005