As everyone in the Midwest slowly awakens from their winter depression hibernation, it is easy to stop and feel that crazed breeze that whips around the buds on the trees, a hungry, wanting wind. A wind that desires to be loved.
Many of us were not curled up with an SO during this past cuffing season, and with springtime warmth came the inevitable thirst of summer.
Crawling out of my personal depression hole involved dislodging myself from the queen sized bed in the corner of my friends’ living room, where it’s been for 6 months, and actually deciding to move my muscles at a yoga class or two. Now every time that I step outside and feel the almost warmth on the wind, I begin to crave love.
This is the first winter that I’ve been single in a long time. Hell, it’s the first winter I’ve around in a long time. I have to say, it’s been shockingly sad and lonely. But here I am on the other side, still very much whole, and still very much alone.
I found myself craving love and romance. With many of my closest friends in long term relationships, I felt that there was no recipient for me to dote on, something I very much enjoy doing.
The worst part of all was feeling unloved and unseen. This winter when I felt unloved and unappreciated, I retreated into myself and began resenting the people around me for not giving me the love and attention that I felt I deserved (of course at the time I thought I was just grumpy and couldn’t figure out why). This carried on into the beginning of spring. I was grasping for love, craving it, and resenting that I wasn’t getting enough. I could not figure out what had changed in my life so drastically that in less than a year, I went from feeling happy and loved and fulfilled, to resentful and petty. For months I worked on changing my diet, changing my form of birth control, working through trauma, exercising, going out, staying in, meditating, anything at all to help myself feel more grounded and whole again.
And then I decided to try being more loving.
I used to be a very loving and generous person and due to recent traumas, I have pulled back about 99% on giving out love and support willy-nilly. This change in behavior affected me in ways that I did not realize. By loving and supporting the people who I felt were undeserving, I was able to see how incredibly wrong I was to, even subconsciously, decide who and who wasn’t deserving of my love. This revelation of sorts completely upended my seemingly uncontrollable resentment towards the people I craved attention from and allowed me to notice all of the love I receive on a daily basis. Truly some glass half full type of shit.
I’m probably sounding like I went through a depressive winter and came out a changed person through multiple epiphanies or something but in reality, it’s much more subtle than that. I still sometimes get petty when *that person* doesn’t reply to my snapchats, or feel a twinge of jealousy when my friends spend time with their SO’s. But I have changed my daily mindset by knowing how to recognize these secondary emotions and not let them spin out of control. I can taking a breath and remember that someone else’s happiness does not detract from my own; love is a renewable resource. This winter was one of the worst in my 24 years of life, but at least I seem to have learned a coping method from it. It’s something that I’ve always known, but have never had to consciously put into practice before:
The more loving you are, the more loved you feel. And if you feel like your love is not being returned to you, give more.