Last week’s AgingCare.com newsletter featured a piece by Anne-Marie Botek titled “Daylight Saving Time Can Negatively Affect Senior Health.” I’m glad to have a convenient excuse for being in a fog for at least a day or two, and I’m laying claim to her article as my explanation for missing yet another “posting” day.
Several months ago my son Christian posted some guidelines for blogging. The one that was most
convicting to me was the one about being consistent. Up to that point, I followed my muse when deciding when to post. If I was inspired, I wrote. If I wasn’t, I didn’t. Christian said that a blogger needs to set a regular schedule and stick with it if she wants to build a regular following. After all, he reasoned, newspapers and magazines wouldn’t have faithful readers if they published on a haphazard schedule. For someone so creative, he can be irritatingly logical. So I made up my mind to post on a regular basis: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I’ve done fairly well at sticking to it, but I slip up occasionally. Sometimes my Friday post doesn’t make it on-line until Saturday, and some days, like Monday of last week, I don’t post at all. Being my own harshest critic, I’m usually highly aware of these transgressions, and I fret and worry and beat myself up until I get back on schedule. Not so yesterday.
I drifted through the day in a kind of retired-person haze as if I had absolutely no responsibilities to myself or anyone else. I got up at 6:30 and spent an extra long time in Bible study and prayer, and then I caught up on some Cyberspace reading and correspondence until it was time to go to the Senior Center for lunch. All our friends seemed more focused on “getting things done” than I was, and since everyone left immediately after eating, David and I were home earlier than normal. It was too chilly and windy to work outside, so we decided on a big outing to “town.” We drove the 20 miles to Lowe’s in Sulphur Springs where I found some heretofore elusive mustard green seeds. I wandered around and chose a few more packets of future vegetables, and then we moved on to Wal-Mart where I drifted through the aisles, picking up the few things on my list and a few extras that caught my eye.
While browsing the garden section for a pair of work gloves to replace the ones that have holes in
three fingers, I ran into Aunt Fay. More accurately, she ran into me, gently “rear-ending” me with her basket. We chatted a few minutes, and after waiting 30 minutes for a checker in training to deal with three customers including me, we went over to Aunt Fay’s for cookies and coffee. By the time we caught up on all the family news, drove home, put away the groceries, had dinner and watched a movie, it was bedtime. As I was dozing off, I though, I didn’t write anything today. In fact, I didn’t even think about writing today.
I’m having the same sort of drifty day today, wandering from sorting laundry to writing a few words to pulling a few weeds in the garden and back to writing. I started this post after my morning quiet time, and I had to force myself to forego a late-afternoon nap to finish it. In the Agingcare article, Botek states that “Even a small change in your snooze schedule can knock your natural circadian rhythm out of whack.” She quoted a Swedish study that says the incidence of heart attacks increases by 5% after the Spring Forward event, probably due to stress, and a Canadian study says that fatal auto accidents increase by as much as 17% on the Monday after Daylight Savings Time begins, probably because of sleepy, inattentive drivers. Botek goes on to say that “disrupting a senior’s natural biological rhythms may also cause an increase in disorientation and erratic behavior.” So it seems to me that Daylight Savings Time has given me a good excuse for my inattention and lack of motivation. As Aunt Fay would say, that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.