I won’t let winter swallow me

What is the temperature where you live? Here, just outside of Toronto its the kind of cold that the air hurts your face. I barely venture outside, and even driving somewhere makes me groan. But I am refusing to let winter take me down with it.

Last week I wrote a post about how I was actually enjoying Christmas break. In fact the next day when I re-read it I annoyed myself. Because the next day I unravelled. Actually I unravelled the day after that too. I hit my wall, because doing multiple activities a day with my family left zero time for my introverted side to go into a quiet place and recharge. I was burnt out, peopled out and just done.

I didn’t cry though, which is a big improvement. I more just started stressing audibly about messes in our home and saying loudly, “I need school to start.”

Actually, random fact… I learned last week from my lovely husband that apparently I talk to myself… all the time. According to him I narrate my day. A habit I am assuming I picked up over the past couple years of working from home with kids in school and daycare.

So when Mike would yell, “pardon?” every five minutes from the other room and I had to yell back, “I wasn’t talking to you!” It didn’t help my fraying nerves.

Last year the winter won. I always start fighting seasonal depression each fall, but between having a bad case of strep throat in January of 2017 and immersing myself in the red hot political world of news, I fell into a black hole of despair. It took me a couple months and some big changes to pull myself out, but I finally did.

So by the end of the day on Saturday I had a choice to make. Was I going to let the winter swallow me like it did last year? No I wouldn’t allow it.

So what I am I doing about it? I am taking control. On Sunday I put my foot down and slowed down. I sent my family out of the house and enjoyed three hours of silence. I am still standing up for what works for me.

But the two biggest things of all…

I am hanging onto a routine while life is routine-less. That means setting my alarm for 6:45pm and doing our typical routine to get our twins to daycare, despite our big kids still being off for the holidays. And I am hanging onto my typical grocery shopping and meal planning routines.

I am being careful about what I watch and consume. Whether it’s a disturbing movie, the news, or even too much crappy food. I know that it is tempting to let it all in when you are mostly homebound, but I have finally learned that all of those things have a big impact on my mental state.

How do you feel this time of year? Is there a certain time of year that triggers you? Do you have any tips on how to beat the winter blues?

Here is a look back at some of our family’s summer routine ┬ávideos that I created for Baby Center. Maybe we can all take a little motivation from these routines.