Some of you may know that I struggle with seasonal depression. The struggle is worse in the winter months, but that’s OK because each winter brings me a new opportunity to stand up to and try to conquer my depression. I did well this past winter in spite of the sudden loss of my dog, Murphy, a change in medication, constant dreary weather, and a few other things that got me down and out. I was proud of myself for making it through another winter, and I was proud of myself for silencing that voice that tries to convince me to give up. I made it through once again, and I will keep on making it through year after year.

Hope helps me through the winter. I have hope that there will be brighter days. I have hope that each winter day, no matter how cold or dark, will offer something beautiful. I have hope that God is by my side, and I have hope that my family will catch me if I fall. There is also the hope that spring will come back around, which it has, as it always does. It’s a feeling of relief every year when the days get longer and warmer and the flowers start to bloom. I feel energetic and happy all over again because my winter days of hoping have been rewarded with days of joy.

I feel like anything is possible during the spring. Animals that were in hibernation begin to stir, dark skies are once again flooded blue, and the wilted plants spring to life. Watching these natural changes makes me feel rejuvenated and it comforts me because it reminds me of the Bible scriptures of Christ’s return. John 14:1-3 says, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to be with me, that where I am you may be also.” I like to imagine Christ’s return like the coming of spring. One day there will be no bad days. The seasons won’t matter and everything will have life and nothing will be sad or dreary because all things will be made new again and that’s truly something worth hoping for.

— Kayla Beaty is the managing editor of the Times-Journal. She can be reached at kbeaty@times-journal.com.

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