Thursday, November 5, 2009

Can I never take the easy way? Obviously not.

I hope that in my last post I did not give the impression that my battle with the depression demons was over. While things are looking much better, I'm still struggling with the ennui that comes with these episodes. I intermittently feel like my head has been replaced by cotton candy and my motivation kidnapped and taken to Guam.

Case in point: for the past five years I have traditionally observed "pagan lent," meaning that I give something (generally a food item) up between Samhain and Yule. I usually obsess over the decision of what to give up for most of October. This year I completely forgot. I honestly didn't remember the practice until today, when it is too late to start something. I'm not sure what to do about this. On the one hand, Pagan Lent is a practice that makes me feel closer to my spirituality, which is something I could use right now. On the other hand, I've already missed five days and don't have any idea of what to give up this year. Maybe the right thing for me to do is to focus on getting myself better? With the new light box I feel like I might have a chance of making it through the dark season with a modicum of grace. And I'm not exactly a useful conduit for spirit when I'm feeling broken inside. Perhaps the best offering I could make right now would be to start putting aside the habitual trappings of depression and making myself healthier. Though honestly, giving up salty snack food would be a whole lot easier....

If that is the case (and I feel that it very well may be), I need to figure out what concrete steps I should be taking. Do I set up a daily schedule for myself to be more productive? Install moments throughout the day to recharge myself? Yes, and yes. This is going to be a hell of a lot harder than I would like, but if it works it will also be a hell of a lot more rewarding.

Monday, November 2, 2009

October: a mixed bag

This past month has been mixed, spiritually speaking. I was hit hard by the depression demons, which was rough, but had the benefit of helping me to realize that there is a major seasonal component to my depression. This motivated me to buy a light box, which has helped enormously. I'm still feeling somewhat sluggish, but am feeling significantly better than I did even a two weeks ago! But struggling with mental health issues does not really lead to in-depth spiritual practice, contrary to certain popular ideas.

On the upside, the month of October included Twilight Covening. This year was not as intense an experience for me as last year, but I think that the energy ran just as deep, if not deeper, and that the coming year will be productive. It seems that my work for this year is to step up into having a more fully participatory role in a number of areas of my life, and that can only be a good thing.

And because it would be remiss of me not to mention Samhain, the most popular of all pagan holidays, I will mention that I attended Earthspirit's Open Samhain East on Saturday, that it was as deep and rich as I have come to expect (anticipate?) from their rituals. It was the perfect way for me to observe the latest turning of the wheel.