• Dr. Melanie S. Hussain

Feeling MELancholy

Wow, hello December. I wasn’t ready for you to come this soon.

I have found myself overwhelmed with the changes and life’s motions happening so quickly. Trying to adjust as fast as they change. I wonder if you’re feeling the same way?

Something just seems off. I feel off. I have found myself very pensive this past month in particular and experiencing sadness, with no true cause. I mean, I have had my fair share of losses this year and the ebbs and flows, but I truly feel an air of melancholy surrounding me and my spirit.

Melancholy is a word I have always gravitated towards…since I was about 4 years old. It actually was a word that came up when my older sister was studying for her spelling bee tests and I would love to sit and watch her study with my mom as she prepared. When she came across that word, she said, “Look Mel, your name is in this word!” And I just recall loving that aspect, but also spelling that word with her and the meaning of it. I think it was one of the first big words I could spell at that age. I also find it to be a rather beautiful word with vast meanings. As I grew older, I added MELANCHOLY to my vocabulary repertoire, and I resonate with it more and more as time passes by.

Melancholy: depression of spirits, a pensive mood, sorrow with purpose.

I don’t feel like MEL. Just feeling a little melancholy. It’s not something I can really share and open up about, and that’s okay. I know my own personal experiences that have made this year harder on me. As I reflect on this year, it really is hard to see the growth through mourning. But I know it’s there. I know that during this time, we are all faced with so many different experiences, some good and some not so good. Our world looks different right now. Melancholy is very different from sadness. Sadness is where you are experiencing hopelessness and more grief. With melancholy, there.

Maybe we are feeling low because we can’t see our loved ones, we can’t share holidays with our families, we are experiencing strains in our relationships, disappointment with celebrations and functions, feeling unmotivated and numb from failures, pressures in our profession, and even distress within ourselves.

On the other end, maybe we have had amazing wins. This can include, growing closer to our partners, new milestones, expanding families, engagements and marriages, passing exams and achieving in our profession, noticing self-growth and even loving this version of yourself.

Whatever it may be, it is still something. We have to grow through what we go through right? It’s hard to not compare ourselves and our experiences to others, we always want what we don’t have, and we always find a reason for wanting more or less, and something we just may not know what we need or want and it leaves us feeling a bit numb, empty, and self confined.

But am I feeling melancholy in any of my life’s motions?

A melancholic person is typically calm and quiet despite their internal, emotional turmoil. This type of person prefers to hide their feelings and often remains calm in most events-even joyous ones or moments of anger. Sometimes they feel better holding onto their own thoughts and feelings because it provides them comfort. It’s a way to self soothe, perhaps even swaddle themselves with their feelings. They are often sensitive and very empathetic.

I don’t know about you, but this fits me like no other. I write this to you, my fellow meltuition followers, to not only share what I am experiencing but to also connect with those who may be feeling the same way as we entering a new month, perhaps feeling the same way. Know that it’s okay and you are on your own timeline. It can be hard for those surrounding you to witness your states of pensiveness, quietness, subtleness. But, this is your process and you know yourself best. There are no “you should be happier” or “I wish you were more like this…” That is too much pressure to put on yourself, know that your feelings are simply that, YOUR FEELINGS. And no one can take them away from you, you know your process and you know your pain. And sometimes we think we may be experiencing anxiety, or how I like to call it, "anxies." You might just be feeling the melancholies.

Embrace it. I know I do.

And this holiday season, if someone says to you to cheer up or what’s wrong, you look sad. You can simply tell them you’re feeling melancholy and that is more than okay.

Take time for you. Take all the time you need to get through. No rush, be patient with yourself as best as you can. And do what feels right for you this month, my advice to you is to truly follow your meltuition more than ever.

I’m going to try it too.

Be well and stay safe. Here to hold space for you whenever you want.

With extra love,

Dr. Mel

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