Monday, May 14, 2007

Things I'd Rather Do Than Sleep

After delivering my son, I remember my doctor asking at our six-week visit, "Are you sleeping when the baby sleeps?"

"Heck, no!" I said. "That's my time to myself. I'm not going to waste it sleeping." When an introvert has a baby, she can forget about 8 hours sleep.

I'm still saying it a year later. There's just too many other things I'd rather be doing: reading, sewing, playing on the 'net, taking a bath, cuddling up on the couch with my husband. But sleep? Naw.

Supposedly this lack of sleep is going to shave years off my life and make me obese. But you know what? I don't buy it. And here's why:

1) I've got plenty of energy. I'm productive and rarely fatigued.

2) Up until the last fifty years, Eskimos slept 14 hours a night during the winter and 6 hours a night during the summer. If they can be so adaptable, why not me?

3) Sleep isn't one-size-fits-all any more than your temperature. (Did you know that few people actually have a 98.6 resting body temp? Mine is usually 97.8.)

I've got my dad's sleep genes (the man is a machine), and I embrace it. So why can't I embrace the fact that my son has those genes too? The kid just doesn't want to slow down. Why sleep when there are cars to roll and balls to bounce and dogs to hug? I tell myself it's a sign of future greatness. Margaret Thatcher only slept five hours and night. As Napolean once said, "six hours sleep for a man, seven for a woman and eight for a fool."

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