Friday, February 17, 2006

The February Blues

February is my absolute least favorite month. It sits there pretending to be all unassuming and cute with its little 28 days, but really its cold and empty and ruthless. Everyday feels like a marathon of obstacles and disappointments.

Last week, about this time, I thought, "Wow, I'm doing ok this February. It's going pretty fast." Now, a week later, I feel like I've been trapped in this soul-sucking black hole forever. It's not even just the weather. It's been oddly warm here in New England, and I could feel the warmth and the sun trying to coax me out of February yesterday afternoon, trying to convince me that everything was zippity-do-dah. But its all a tease. It's February folks, and its not going to let us off the hook just because we got thrown a sunny 55 degree day.

And so I hate February. I hate the way it takes every happy moment and puts a bitter edge on it. I hate the way it makes me lethargic, and then makes me hate me for being so lazy. I hate the way it drops everything that I pick up. I hate the way it makes me crave warmth, but even when I am warm, it never feels warm enough. Ditto with love. I hate the way it taunts me with Valentine's Day, trying to convince me that it's full of love when it's really just there to make me wonder where the love has gone it buried underneath the flowers and generic cards? Where is that fucking love come February? I hate the way it kicks me when I am down, throwing accusations of what I already fear at me from soul-less doctors sources, making me constantly question myself and fear that I'm just fucking it alllllll up. I hate February more than I could possibly express.

I'm not a big lyric posting fan, but this is exactly what I mean, and this song soothes me through the cold emptiness of February almost every year. I sing it in the car, I sing it in the shower, I hum it at work. And eventually, if I keep just curling up inside under the blanket of quiet melodic truth, it seems to become spring. February has hit me fully in the stomach, and this seems to be the only recourse I've got now.

February - Dar Williams

I threw your keys in the water, I looked back,
they'd frozen halfway down in the ice.
They froze up so quickly, the keys and their owners,
Even after the anger, it all turned silent, and
The everyday turned solitary,
So we came to February.

First we forgot where we'd planted those bulbs last year,
Then we forgot that we'd planted at all,
Then we forgot what plants are altogether,
And I blamed you for my freezing and forgetting and
The nights were long and cold and scary,
Can we live through February?

You know I think Christmas was a long red glare,
Shot up like a warning, we gave presents without cards,
And then the snow,
And then the snow came, we were always out shoveling,
And we'd drop to sleep exhausted,
Then we'd wake up, and its snowing.

And February was so long that it lasted into march
And found us walking a path alone together.
You stopped and pointed and you said, "That's a crocus",
And I said "What's a crocus? And you said, "Its a flower",
I tried to remember, but I said "What's a flower?"
You said, "I still love you."

The leaves were turning as we drove to the hardware store,
My new lover made me keys to the house,
And when we got home, well we just started chopping wood,
Because you never know how next year will be,
And well gather all our arms can carry,
I have lost to February.


Anonymous V-Grrrl said...

I've blogged on the bleakness of February too. I feel your pain!

8:08 AM  
Blogger Tink said...

Amen to that! I hate February almost as much as I hate Mondays. I think we should get rid of them both.

11:07 AM  
Blogger JayneSays said...

I hear that. I love that song (Dar's the coolest, saw her in concert several years ago, her song about the Christians and the Pagans sitting down for Thanksgiving always cracks me up, When I Was a Boy makes me cry everytime and yeah, February . . . ) Hang in there; Spring is right around the corner!

1:19 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

February in New England is all about crushing the soul. This is the month - every year - that I think "I am so THROUGH with this shit" about every aspect in my life.

Then March comes and I start to feel better.

Have you considered some light therapy? I know some for whom that has helped, greatly.

2:08 PM  
Anonymous TB said...

One of my favorite Dar songs and the perfect accent to a post that had me nodding my head and marveling that you still have the presence of mind to write so beautfully about this stupid month and how crappy it is.

2:29 PM  
Blogger The Gradual Gardener said...

Hey, head on over to my site. I posted some pictures to cheer you up!

2:47 PM  
Anonymous Nancy said...

I've never heard that song, but I think I'm going to go find it now. It's perfect to describe the month.

Hope you are feeling better soon!

6:19 PM  
Blogger Iamadesigner said...

That's one of my favorite songs-got me through a pretty rough break up a few years ago. Dar Williams is great for that kind of thing.

12:04 AM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...

Am I ever glad to hear someone else say this. I am in such a funk right now that I lay on my bed this afternoon fighting back tears. I hate how I'm feeling right now...thanks for the lyrics. I needed them today. :)

3:22 PM  
Anonymous roo said...

Oh, Dar, you always sing the truth.

We're better than halfway through, V! It'll get better soon-- I promise!

1:29 AM  
Blogger Brooke said...

I'm in a funk and I live in San Diego. OK, it rained. But am I still allowed to hate February too?

4:52 AM  
Blogger V said...

Thank goodness I'm not the only one! N seems to think I'm a little nuts...and says things like "It's all in your head." It's still shitty, who cares if its in my head!

Dawn....yeah, I've thought about getting one of those lights many times, but I haven't done it yet...I'm such a good procrastinator.

7:14 AM  
Anonymous roo said...

Oh... LIGHT therapy. I thought she meant counselling that wasn't too intense-- like, let's talk about your strange dreams, but leave your parents out of it...

9:45 PM  
Anonymous anne said...

I don't know if you read back this many days, but your post about February really struck a chord.

I wanted to share with you the one good thing about February -- yes, there is one good thing:

Every little bit of spring and summer are ahead of you, fresh and unspent. No "where did summer go?" blues. It's all just around the corner!

6:06 PM  
Blogger V said...

True, true Anne. If I survive the wait, it will be a happy happy day. I can't even wait for that day....that ridiculously warm day in March when it hits like 80 degrees and you can go out in a tank top! Ahhhhh.....I can almost feel the sun on my shoulders!
Thanks for stopping in with a dose of optimism!

8:10 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Love Dar Williams...

12:41 AM  

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