I left the house without my keys this morning. I walked out the front door and stood in front of my car for a full minute, trying to process the problem facing me. Finally, it occurred to me that since the car was locked, I should find someway of altering that situation. I went back inside and promptly forgot why Iâ€™d done that.
Back in college, we used to joke that, â€œSleep is a crutch!â€ Weâ€™d stay up until the wee hours of the morning talking, then drag ourselves â€“ bleary-eyed â€“ to any class that had the audacity to take place before noon. For two years, I participated in Childrenâ€™s Theatre. This class required me to be present at 7 a.m., before we costumed up and went to perform teachable lessons at school assemblies around the Bay Area. That is the full extent of my memories of the program. I may have even slept-walked through a couple performances. (I do recall dressing up as a mama bear and a gypsyâ€¦)
Then I landed a job that required my tushy to be in my chair at my desk by 6 a.m. (NYSE hours). I still occasionally stayed up through the wee hours â€“ but my definition of â€œwee hoursâ€ rapidly changed: any point on the clock involving double-digits. (In hindsight, I donâ€™t think Iâ€™ll even specify between standard and military time.)
Interestingly enough, the muppets have been sleeping far more these days â€“ practically through the night. We even had a stint from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. this week. But the stress and sleep deprivation of these past five months is starting to catch up with me. I am now fully aware of why they call it â€œmommy brain.â€
A recent Yahoo! Health article points out some of the most common sleep misconceptions. Number one is that people can be â€œshort sleepers.â€ The article goes on to say that the majority of adults need at least 7-8 hours of sleep, per night, to remain healthy. These scientists obviously do not have children.
According to BabyCenter.com, most muppet-aged babies (Iâ€™m averaging actual and adjusted ages) sleep a total of 12 to 15 hours a day, including nighttime sleep and naps. And, around three months, little ones begin to develop more of a regular sleep/wake cycle and no longer require as many midnight snacks.
But in addition to sleeping more at night, Search and Destroy are far more alert during the day. Itâ€™s awesome to see them looking around, wide-eyed, as they take in everything new to the world for them. I may complain about the exhaustion from being â€œonâ€ 24/7, but their discoveries certainly put a new perspective on things.
I have no idea what Iâ€™m doing as a new mom. Iâ€™m sure being on high-alert in anticipation of their next adventure is what makes me tired â€“ well, that waking up at their every movement to make sure theyâ€™re okay. But that absolutely must pale with the exhaustion from trying to learn how to live.
Come to think of it, Iâ€™m pretty sure their wonder of learning all things new and exciting includes the genetic predisposition of â€œSleep is a crutch!â€ Why sleep when stuff might be happening?!