Daylight Saving Crime

I lived in Arizona, one of the few places without daylight saving time, for 21 years. Now, after 15 years on this crazy back and forth schedule, I’m still not used to it. Sure I loved the extra hour this morning to get things done. But I also grew up in the sun for 21 years, so to take away an hour of my sunshine — especially in one of the cloudiest/rainiest regions — is criminal, plain and simple.

Growing up, I used to love this time of year because it meant: 1) Thanksgiving turkey and stuffing (full of gluten in those days), 2) my birthday, which I shared with my snowbird Grandpa, 3) Chanukka, and 4) I might get to wear a sweater soon. Alternately, in the Pacific NW, November means stuffy noses from heaters, wet dog smell, mud chunks in the house, and wearing coats over sweaters. I would say that the joy of my approaching birthday remains, except that it’s just not fun to celebrate my getting older anymore.  Mortality takes all the air out of my party balloons. The biggest change to this season is that it’s now the time when my entire being relives my dad’s death. The light, air, smells, etc. trigger my mind to remember and “see” various traumatic scenes from 2 years ago. My cells like to remember things, too, so my body gets in on the act by feeling anxiety where there is no longer the imminent loss. Back to my brain, which now finds new reasons to be anxious to make sense of the anxiety’s presence (pregnancy is a well-fueled source of such reasons). All I can say is that at least this year I’m home; I turned 35 on my trip to AZ for the gravestone unveiling last year.

Then come the self-lashings for not letting the anticipated birth of my daughter completely wipe away all of this dark stuff. Am I not excited to be 8 months pregnant after trying for so long? Do I want the last weeks of my daughter’s gestation to take place in a gloomy womb? What the hell is wrong with me?, right?! My dad sure wouldn’t want me waddling around like a sad duck.

I’m not saying there aren’t lovely moments of light in this time as well. Some of these days I actually see the sun way off in the southern distance. Other folks I know are having babies, and I get a hit off their joy. K and I get to snuggle on the couch more. Friends are truly wonderful.  Maybe I’m just going through sugar withdrawal (the “close, but not a diagnosis” diabetes test has brought out the protective mama in K).

Since I can’t have a problem without a solution, I’m going for this long shot: to travel back in time to 1895 and steal all the ink from George Vernon Hudson’s inkwell. And put a gag in his mouth for extra precaution.

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(Disclaimer: No men were harmed in the making of this blog.)

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