When you’re an adult, changing the clocks for Daylight Saving Time is a mild annoyance. It’s frustrating when you lose an hour as you “spring forward,” but the consolation prize is that the sun is out later. Nobody likes it when it gets dark in the late afternoon after you “fall back,” but that night when you get an extra hour of sleep sure is nice. Your internal rhythms get slightly out of whack in both scenarios, but you readjust quickly. Because you’re a grown up.
But for kids, the time change is a form of torture.
Most children become dependent on their routines. The passage of time may be an abstract concept, but even from a young age, most little ones understand the overall structure of how their days are laid out. Changes to the typical schedule can usually be handled without much fuss — if little Sally stays up late on Saturday, she can take a longer nap on Sunday and be just fine.
But changing the clocks is a different thing. It’s not a one-time aberration, it’s a long-lasting shift of the entire timeline. And it wreaks havoc on young little bodies.
(To be clear, I’m specifically talking about my kids, though I have heard countless other parents make similar complaints.)
In this section of the blog, I was going to explain why we have this ridiculous system in place. But I googled it, and the history of Daylight Saving Time is incredibly boring. It wasn’t created for farmers as Homer thinks — it has to do with the war or something. One of the World Wars. WWI, I think. I already forgot, and googling it again is just going to enrage me more. Because the point is that it’s an incredibly outdated system that we still have in place… just because.
And I don’t get it. At all. Why is no one talking about how stupid this is? Why isn’t anyone trying to get rid of this massive headache? Twice a year everyone in the country is miserable (kids and parents in particular).
FOR. NO. REASON.
I get that the political climate in this country is such that if one party says the sky is blue the other side has to declare that it’s not. But c’mon, guys. Surely this can be something that we all agree on? (Like back when everyone in Congress agreed that commercials were too damn loud.) And during this fiercely competitive race for the Presidential nomination, why wouldn’t any of the candidates publicly say that if elected, they’d put an end to this clock-changing nonsense once and for all? Seems like an incredibly easy way to pick up some popular support.
Though what do I know? I’m not a political strategist or a time-efficiency expert. I’m just an exhausted parent of two kids whose internal clocks have been messed up for days.