We all get them from time to time. All of a sudden without any preamble it hits us like a ton of bricks and we feel that we are carrying all the burdens of the world on our puny little shoulders. It goes by many other names of course but most people will recognize it as Sunday Blues. It doesn’t mean that we don’t get the blues on other days but the impact is a little more heavy on Sundays. It is perhaps fitting then that I am writing about it on a grey and cold Sunday afternoon. Many years ago when I had first moved to Portland, blues used to visit more often than I would like to admit. I have spoken to enough people on this topic to know that it is a reasonably common occurrence and I am not the only one who is susceptible to this condition. I believe that at some level we are all aware of how alone we actually are in this world. Sunday Blues is just an acute awareness of that feeling of loneliness concentrated in a short amount of time.
Throughout the regular work week our jobs and other daily chores keep us busy. Friday evenings and Saturdays are typically spent with few friends that we are lucky to have. But Sunday is a nether state, almost like a transitional purgatory. It’s neither here nor there. On Sundays, we are usually on our own getting ready to face the world for another work week. There are no chores to keep us busy. There is just the spectre of beginning the weekly drudgery of work again. Almost involuntarily, our thoughts turn inwards. We are so alone that we can hear the tumult of our thoughts whirling inside our brain. And in that moment when our thoughts are the only things keeping us company, we start to indulge in a bit of soul-searching, trying to understand the meaning of our insignificant lives and wondering if there is any purpose to our lives at all? It is not unlike a weekly bout of existential crisis. I wonder if all of us carry in our DNA the loneliness and utter isolation our pre-historic ancestors must have felt. Maybe we suddenly channel those feelings when we are mentally alone. Or perhaps we are hit with a realization that in the vastness of the universe we are merely specks of microscopic dust floating about in space.
Everybody has their own versions of Sunday Blues I am sure. But I would venture that the trigger is the same — feeling of isolation. Human connection in the form of shared experiences is the nourishment for our soul. We are born alone, we die alone and if we are lucky we connect with a few fellow souls in the time that is given us. Perhaps we miss that on some Sundays and that maybe the simplest explanation for the blues. So I suppose we ought to be thankful for friends, family and loved ones for keeping us company. Without the warmth of human relationships our existence is devoid of its meaning and without that meaning we will all be living in loony bins singing loony tunes.
If any of you have felt something similar at some point in life, please share. And if you happened to devise some methods to keep the blues at bay share those as well.
P.S: I promise that my next post will be more cheerful in keeping with the holiday spirit.