Spring has always been a tough time of year for me. In college there were typically only 6-8 weeks of real good spring weather before the semester was over. Still, it was enough to trigger all sorts of bad feelings and frustrations. A lot of that has continued to carry on with me even though it’s been five years.

In many ways, winter is a relief for me. It’s dark. It’s cold. I can cover myself with clothes. Going out to the grocery store after work or to pick up some food…all covered by darkness. No one has to see me. I feel safer. People also aren’t out and about mingling around. They’re going to places from places.

That all changes with the coming of spring. It’s warmer. It’s lighter. People are out and about. They’re out for longer. They’re laughing, mingling around town, running, bike riding, laying on the lawn, and aren’t bundled up with clothes. The light makes me visible though, and the heat means I can’t cover myself up with clothes anymore. I’m exposed. I’m unsafe.

It’s a sad and difficult time for me because I see everyone out and about. I see them comfortable and even excited about not needing to bundle up. They’re smiling, laughing with friends, doing all sorts of things. Things I can’t do. I don’t have any friends, and now that it’s lighter, I’m just more visible. I don’t want people to see me. I see all these things and am reminded that there’s nothing I can do to make those things happen for me. Either they will or they won’t. So far they haven’t.

College was the worst for this. Of course it was nice that the trees had leaves again, and the wind didn’t blow cold air in your face. You could sit outside again on the quad, play frisbee with friends, or just lie in the sun on chairs in the courtyard. I couldn’t do those things though. I didn’t have any friends who could play frisbee with me. Lie in the sun or under a tree exposed like that? You must be joking.

Those same feelings remain for me today. The only saving grace is that I’m often driving through town so I’m at least safe in my car. I can roll the windows down to enjoy the warmer air, and I won’t have to be stopped anywhere for long. If I see people laughing with friends, enjoying less bundled clothes and the warmth of the season, I can just turn up the music in my car and try to forget that that life isn’t for me. What life is for me? That’s all I want. I just want to know that I’m living some kind of equivalent life that’s right for me.