Try Again Later

It’s been a day.

Really, it’s been a week. Maybe more than a week? As I write this, it’s Friday afternoon and there’s been a lot happening over the past week or so, even though I couldn’t tell you what any of it has been. I’m at the point in life, I think, where things as simple as “I didn’t sleep well last night,” or, “I didn’t get that work done when I thought and it’s playing on my mind” can completely wreck my day, which feels somewhat embarrassing to admit. It’s not that I feel old, per se, as much as I just feel curiously tired in unexpected ways, not least of which emotionally and mentally.

A friend — hi Jeff! — has joked that I’m basically at the age where my body should start to fall apart. Unfortunately, as a result, I’ve spent years preparing for that mentally, noting every single twinge and ache and thinking to myself, this is it, it’s finally starting. This mental and emotional fragility is more unexpected, however, and makes me think that maybe I’ve been paying attention to the wrong stuff all along.

(I worry that describing it as fragility makes it sound more dramatic, more deep, than it actually is; really, I’m just very tired.)

I’m reminded, I realize, of my mother, who built her life around a very strict regime of scheduling that included going to bed early each night; somewhere between nine and ten o’clock, depending on whether or not there was something she was watching on TV. As a kid, I was always surprised that she’d seem to go to bed even when she wasn’t sleepy, or didn’t seem so, but know that I’m older, I feel as if I’ve realized her magic trick: She was doing that to avoid sleepiness and exhaustion. Clearly, I need to adopt this plan.

Maybe I’m old, but not too old to stop learning from my parents. On the other hand, perhaps I’m just turning into my mother. There are worse fates.

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