Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Week That Time Forgot

Ah, Delayed Sleep-Phase Syndrome. What is it, you ask? People afflicted with this bothersome condition have an internal clock that's set on about a 26-hour period, instead of 24. Left to their own devices, these people will simply stay up later and later every night, until they finally go all the way around the clock. Good times, huh?

Well, not so much. I myself have struggled with this for some time now, and as is often the case, I've allowed my schedule to get messed up again. You see, with a regimented routine of light therapy, melatonin, and the strictest of schedules, I can stay on a 24-hour cycle. Work seems to interfere with that, but I kept it together for a couple of months this time (the longest I ever managed was about a year, back when I was in school). So I have to flip my schedule around, and that means staying up two hours later every day until I'm back to normal. That means that for about a week, I'm essentially on an opposite schedule from the rest of the universe.

Truth be told, there's not a lot to do when one is up all hours of the night. That, and I keep wanting nothing more than to go to bed. I spent most of last week feasting myself on old episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show and playing Megaman X: Command Mission, an infuriating RPG whose real title ought to be Final Fantasy: Megaman Edition. It's the perfect companion for after-hours entertainment.

After being awake all night, sleeping all day, not seeing my friends, not really even reading or writing, I feel like this week is lost somehow. If someone asks me what I did this week, the answer is literally "nothing". I didn't meet any interesting new people, I don't have any great books I can recommend, and certainly, I didn't make money (I took a hiatus from work for this). The world went right on without me, but I feel like I've been living in a cave. This probably won't be the last lost week in my life, either.

But it's worth it. Now I'm almost back to normal again, and I can wake up every morning and read for an hour, and go swimming, or go hang out at a coffee shop somewhere. I can spend time with my friends, and perhaps most of all, I can get back to my writing. It's truly a wonderful thing. So yes, I had to lose a week, gone from my life forever. It's like a down payment though, on something far more valuable than a car or a home. It's a down payment on time, time I can now spend doing what I love.

1 comment:

  1. I think I understand. I don't have this syndrome myself, but when my body clock get off, it's really hard to catch up. Think of all the misadventures someone with your syndrome could have. Dean Koontz would love it.

    I'm glad you're back.