The Trouble With Daylight Saving Time

I think this sums it up perfectly:

Every year the time switch gets worse and worse for me. Last year it about killed me. This year it’s doing nearly the same. Why, you may be wondering? Why is this so difficult for you, Sam?

I grew up in Indiana. Up until Mitch Daniels became the governor most of Indiana did not participate in Daylight Saving Time. 

Little bit of trivia about the Hoosier state for you non-natives. The western part of the state is on Central time because many of the people who live there work in Chicago. Chicago is on Central time. Since they already committed to following Chicago’s lead they burrowed even deeper and always observed DST. It makes sense, I suppose. If you’re going to be on a different time schedule than the rest of the entire state because of your ties to Chicago you may as well go all in and change time when Chicago does. 

But for me and most of the people in my state we grew up without having to change our clocks twice a year. No, instead every summer our television shows would start to come on at 7 pm, instead of 8. That was a much easier adjustment than the sudden, “Oh, it’s pitch black at 6:00 at night now.” Or, “Hey, it’s 10:00 and the sun’s still out.” I’m sure the fact that we live right on the border of the time zones helps with those extremes but nevertheless… my point stands. I just start getting used to the idea of the dwindling daylight hours. I can no longer come home and run outside unless I want to do so in the dark. I know that by 6:30, maybe 7:00, it’s going to be dark. And then BAM! Next day it’s dark at 5:30. Pitch black by 6.

I would never make a good vampire. I am one of those people that when it’s dark I’m ready for bed; it could be 2:00 in the afternoon but if the room is dark I could go to sleep and sleep until morning probably. Which is funny because I’m up late quite often. But I’m tired. I can’t really function. It has to be something that does not require a lot of brain function. That’s why it’s so difficult for me to get any writing done. Or to get my ass to the gym later on in the evening.

I get home now and it’s dark. I eat dinner and I wait for my food to digest so that I can go to the gym and run since it’s not safe to do so outside. I sit on the love seat to write a post and I feel my head bobbing. I often find myself resting my head against the back of the love seat while I rest my eyes and before I know it I’m asleep. At least for a little while. Or, I simply lose my will to change clothes, get back into the car, and drive to the gym.

I don’t know why it’s taken such a toll on me these last few years. Yes, I grew up in Indiana but ever since I made my first move as a married person, back in 1996, I’ve lived where the time has changed. Michigan. Mississippi. Utah. Virginia. Hell, come to think of it I’ve lived in every single time zone except for Pacific. It should not be this difficult but it is. Maybe it’s an age thing.

Then again, we observe DST longer than we don’t anymore. I’m pretty sure it used to be 5 or 6 months out of the year, and now it’s 7 1/2, almost 8. My theory is that the time changes when we’re already losing so much sunlight and so now the switch seems so much more abrupt. It might be easier if went back to our regular time in late September or early to mid October when it’s getting dark around 7:30, maybe 8.

As much as I hate losing that hour every March and my body has to adjust to waking up earlier (not to mention it goes right back to being dark when I get up in the morning) I do love having it light much later in the evening.

My mother, on the other hand, hates it. She thinks it’s beyond ridiculous to still be light at 8:00 at night. She thinks 7 is a more reasonable hour. Not me. I love knowing I have time to run after I get home and I don’t need to worry about getting hit by a car because they can’t see me. I like it when it’s light outside at 8 and 9 and I still have the energy to do things and I’m not nodding off at 6:00 because it’s dark and my body sees dark and thinks, “Sleepy time!”

This is the time of year I count down to December 21st. I keep telling myself once I hit that day it’s the shortest day of the year and then the days will grow longer. Or rather the days will stay light longer. I confused my daughter on that once. She looked at me and said, “Don’t they all have 24 hours in them?”

Yes, kid, but some days have much more daylight than others.

Eighteen more days. I can do this. I will endure. I may be in bed by 8:00 some nights, but I will endure.

3 thoughts on “The Trouble With Daylight Saving Time

  1. I live way north in Canada. It’s dark later into the morning, and sunset today was 3:45 pm.

    I often wonder why I still live here, lol. It’s soooooo hard to get through these dark months.

    Summer is why. We get super long and beautiful days.

    I’m with you. Ready for bed at 6. Taking extra vitamin D.



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