When everything is bearable
And there in the still
All that you feel is tranquility."
~~Depeche Mode, Waiting for the Night to Fall
Although my brain and body crave the light of day at this time of year, my heart and soul crave the darkness of night. It's an odd thing that I've never understood. Seems counter-intuitive but there it is. I spend my days during the Winter in the deep pit of despair, squeezing every bit of energy from my body to get through work and my other daily commitments. Mostly though, I fight a battle with my mind as to why it is necessary to get out of bed at all.
But somehow, once the night falls, and everyone is tucked away in their homes for the evening, my spirit does a turn. It is as if I can lay down the battle of whether I did enough that day and just be. I feel creative and alive and semi-okay with all that is.
I just returned from a neighborhood walk. And a smoke. And I was reminded of a rather beautiful touch of grace I received while visiting a hearing specialist this past week. From our short time together he gathered enough information to deem me a "sensitive soul". The wincing into the fetal position while I was having my ears cleaned was, I'm sure, his first clue. The second being my taking meds for sleep and mood stabilization. In the course of his taking my medical history he asked if I was a smoker. I said I was, but that I only smoked occasionally, one cigarette every couple of days.
Later on in the visit, after he'd determined that my hearing issues were not physiological but, as I suspected, auditory processing issues, he says, "You got a lot of stuff going on in your head?"
"You're ADD, aren't you?"
"No worries. It's just part of how your brain works. Nothing to be done. Your brain just has a lot on the go and finds it challenging to parse out conversations sometimes."
I then told him about frequent nosebleeds and asked if the smoking could be an issue. He said that smoking does indeed dry things out but that I just needed to keep things well-hydrated and prescribed an ointment. And then, he said something really kind to me:
"Ya know, I'm not a fan of smoking, of course. But it's obvious that you're not abusing it. And I sense that it's one of the few things that gives you a bit of relaxation right now. So, don't worry too much about it."
If I wasn't still in a state of over-sensitization from the exam, I would've hugged him. I felt seen and understood. A doctor who manages to do that for a patient in less than thirty minutes is okay in my books. Better than okay.
So, I smiled as I lit up a cigarette tonight. I may not always be a smoker. But, for now, it's alright. Just like my penchant for the night is alright. And my current brush with melancholy is alright. It will all pass. Eventually, everything does.