by Bill Deavel, Peer Support Coordinator
October 4, 2022
Seasonal changes are an interesting topic for me to write about. Starting my recovery journey in the Great Northwest you would think that I would have lots to say about the topic. I remember while I was going through mental health treatment lots of my peers talked about how the seasonal changes really affected their mental health. We would talk about coping strategies, going for walks in the mall, certain types of lighting so on and so on. I have to say I dismissed a lot of this due to the fact that I was not affected by the seasonal changes. I know we can be affected by seasonal changes other than just the weather.
What is interesting is that I am affected by one thing that has to do with the seasons-fire season. Fire season has dramatically affected my mental health. I must deliberately be aware of my attitudes and behaviors while the smoke is in the valley. I dont want to get out of bed. I dont want to go to work, and I have this empty complacent doom feeling as an attitude in general. I even feel physically confined. I am grateful for my recovery routine and my self-care because they help me keep from falling too deep into these feelings.