Huh? You ask. Am I playing too much raquetball, or skiing till I drop? Nope. Let me explain.
As the days have been growing darker and darker and our daylight has dwindled to about 6 hours, I have been cruising along happily, so impressed with how well I was dealing with it. "Gee, what's the big deal about it being dark in Alaska? No problem." I've even considered blogging about how much I like the darkness: it is comforting like a blanket in a way, surrounding me. Well, last week I "hit the wall." The lack of light finally started to bug me--really bug me. It might have been the rain we had last week. The roads were icy, icy, icy and the snow wasn't that great for skiing. I got to the gym most days and ate pretty well--just a handful of potato chips each night. But I didn't spend any time outside, and I think that's what did me in.
I blogged about the lack of sunlight last year, but I think it may be something I revisit each year--as many Alaskans do. Everyone is affected, though some more than others. Even people who have lived here all their lives notice it. A key factor is sunshine. The sun has been hiding for weeks it seems, besides the weak (though beautiful) light of sunrises or sunsets. I recall noticing the darkness in Marquette, Michigan one winter (and moved to Arizona after that winter!!) simply because the sun never came out. The lack of light is not just an issue in Alaska; many people in the Lower 48 deal with it as well, as I did that one winter in Michigan. But it is more pronounced here--and in some places in Alaska much more than others.
What "hitting the wall"has reminded me is that I really have to take care of myself...and I really need to get outside to catch what rays there might be. It takes a conscious effort to stay sane and stay happy in Alaska, but it can be done. This was my wake-up call!