Wednesday, July 8, 2009

On sleep

Speaking of evolutionary principles, what is the point of fighting one's bedtime till all hours when you know perfectly well you will be up at 6 am no matter when you fell asleep? It seems mighty counterintuitive seeing as how doctors have shown that inadequate sleep will affect you negatively in many ways. So why do toddlers fight their parents, sometimes for hours each night, about falling asleep in their beds and then spend the next day all bleary eyed and crabby for all to enjoy?

Of course it's not just the toddlers is it? How many of you adults out there fight your bedtime constantly? I say almost every day 'today I'm going to go to bed early because I feel like crap.' Does it happen? Oh no. Despite the fact that I know that my impatient, tired toddlers will be rattling their cages loudly and screaming starting as early as 6, I watch one more crappy show, read one more magazine, send one more email. I know I feel like my justification these days is that once the kids finally go to sleep I need a couple of hours to decompress but really? I'd feel better in the morning with less decompression and more sleep. And honestly? I didn't go to bed on time before I had kids.

So what is this about human nature? I'm a morning person and I still can't get into bed on time. So I spend my days dragging around trying to find the energy to play with three wildcats and rueing the lack of sleep I got last night, because in addition to my stupidity one or more babies may have had a bad night and awakened me 3 or 4 times for comforting, and I think to myself that there must be a reason we do this to ourselves? Perhaps the saber toothed tiger was on the prowl in early evening and we needed to be up to watch for it?

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