Who Needs Sleep?
Insomnia stinks. It's 4:17 AM and I don't feel the slightest hint of sleepiness. I have kids who do me the favor of sleeping till after 9 AM most days, and my awesome brother takes care of them and lets me sleep in even later than that most days. But if I were to fall asleep right this second, I would have to sleep till 12:17 PM to get the 8 hours I desperately need to function properly--not that I ever actually get it. And there's something unseemly about sleeping past noon when you're not a teenager, a drunkard, or infected with mono. Not that I haven't done it. It's just not something I would do if I could help it.
Oh, who am I kidding? I would TOTALLY sleep past noon all the time if I could! But since I rarely get to sleep before 1:30 AM, it's not quite as scandalous as all that.
Why is it that it seems lazy and irresponsible to sleep past noon, even if you fell asleep at 5 in the morning? My mother-in-law seems to think I'm a good-for-nothing because I sleep later than she deems proper. She doesn't care that I actually sleep less than she does--I do my sleeping at different hours than she does, and that means I am ruining my life, her son's life, and her grandsons' lives. Evidently sleeping from 3 AM to 10 AM makes you a bad person and sleeping from 10 PM to 6 AM makes you a good person. (Okay, that's not fair for me to say. It's not my sleeping habits that make me a bad person and have me ruining everyone's life--it's everything else about me.) She seems to think that I chose to have insomnia and that if I really wanted to go to sleep before midnight, I could, even though I've never been able to manage that, even as a preschooler.
When your earliest memory is when you were barely two and you were lying in bed trying to fall asleep while your parents watched Johnny Carson, it doesn't give you a lot of hope for establishing an early bedtime.
I'm afraid this insomnia is hereditary. My dad was an insomniac most of his life, and it's only recently that he's developed the ability to fall asleep quickly--except now he wakes up for a couple of hours in the middle of the night all the time. Poor little Bennett didn't fall asleep till 1:15 this morning and it's not an unusual occurrence. He sometimes lays there and stares at the ceiling for an hour or more. I might get a little frustrated if I didn't know exactly how he feels. Speaking of the sweet little guy, he just came into our room and climbed into the empty spot that Steve just vacated--poor guy feels like it's sleeping in to get up at 4 AM for work because he used to have to get up at 3 AM. I should probably break Bennett of the habit of coming into our room to sleep in the middle of the night, but I have to admit that I love it when he climbs in and snuggles up with me. I know it won't be long till snuggling with Mommy will be considered cruel and unusual punishment, and not too much longer after that when I'm up late worrying about where he is and what he's up to. At least it won't be tough to stay up till his curfew--and not just because of the insomnia, mostly because his curfew will be 9 PM!