I allowed myself a few days of real rest to recuperate from travel. As I age, it gets harder and harder to overcome the effects of jet lag. But I do have a few tricks that help me through that week.
- Get back to a regular sleep routine - It's best to establish a wake up time as soon as possible. It seems that's the key factor in getting back to a regular sleep cycle. I did, at first, go to bed at a normal time and then wake up around 3 to 4 a.m. for a few days. I kept the lights down low until morning, and after about three days, I could sleep through till 6 a.m. I got really sleepy about 3 p.m., and am still experiencing that after a week and a half. I try to keep myself to a 20 minute nap, if I do choose to lay down.
- Don't let anyone know you're back - I needed a few days to deal with cultural re-entry shock, and I was not prepared to be inundated with phone calls and emails from neighbors, who seemed to be hovering in anticipation of my return. Really, I'm not all that popular around here, but there seem to be some people who felt the need to get me up to speed on the goings-on in the community, the latest gossip, and to interrogate me about my family and my trip. It was fun to go in with a plan; saying, "I really don't want to talk about that right now," was really quite gratifying!
- After extended absences from home, allow for the fact that some things might have changed around the house - my husband and maid have hidden all my stuff! It took me three days to find nearly everything, and now I'm having to rearrange the kitchen and the pantry. I may have to label cabinets in Russian before I leave again next month for the summer. I wonder if they sell Russian labelers around here...
I will write more later this week, specifically about my road to good health. Right now, I have to go make my own Mother's Day breakfast.