A dear friend of mine gave me the mug you see in the photo playfully perched on my laundry basket.
“I have so much to do that I’m going to bed.”
How many of us have felt this way but stayed up late anyway? Stayed up trying to stay on top of laundry and dishes and kid stuff and emails and well, life? I wrote my last post about the checklist and not always being able to get everything done, and since then I have determined that part of the solution to getting more done would actually be to go to bed. Truly.
As moms and wives and friends we are exhausted. Not just today, everyday. I almost fell asleep this week in the middle of a fifteen minute eyebrow wax. Yes, while I was getting hair ripped of my face with hot wax I really could have taken a nap.
I think sometimes in the joy of the moment and with all the wonderful things in my life I forget how truly tired I am, but when I lie down and am still, even for a brow wax, my body reminds me, I AM TIRED. I AM EXHAUSTED.
According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSL) most healthy adults need seven to nine hours of sleep every night, and if this sleep is missed for just one night it can take weeks to get our bodies back on track. Weeks! Pondering this fact I think about how many nights my sleep has been less than the recommended seven to nine hours and I realize I have a lot of catching up to do!
The irony of all of this is that when we get less sleep because we are trying to do more, we actually are getting less done and less done well. According to health.com there are eleven benefits to getting healthy sleep. If we get better sleep we will:
Curb Inflammation in our bodies
Have a healthier weight
Avoid Accidents (in 2009 there were more sleep related car crashes than alcohol related!)
After reading these facts I realize,,, TA DA! The lack of sleep in my life explains all of my ailments; my memory sucks (my friends and I joke that we have early alzheimer’s), my attention is terrible (I just hit my garage door pulling into the garage this morning), my weight is higher than it has been in past years (might be the wine too…), and my body is so inflamed I’ve been dealing with an AC joint injury for over a year (going in for cortisone today!). So do I need more sleep?
So the problem lies in making this happen.
I thought about sleeping alone and told my husband he’d make a fortune if he built homes like the castles of old with king and queen separate bedrooms…meet for nookie, sleep separately. I ADORE my husband, but he snores. And I think everyone sleeps better when they have their own bed and there is no snoring. I envision a four poster feather just like Scarlett O’Hara’s….but, in reality, I do like the comfort of having the one I love next to me and I don’t think it would be good for the kids to see their parents in two different bedrooms.
I thought about taking Ambien every night, but my husband travels and it’s probably not such a good idea to be totally knocked out when I have three kids. And when I googled if Ambien was addictive I found out that there are actual rehabilitation clinics for Ambien addiction! (Did you know that?!)
I have tried earplugs, sound machines, melatonin, cherry juice, warm milk, there are a thousand suggestions for sleep out there but what suggestion isn’t out there? What haven’t I really tried? Throwing all else out the window and just going to bed! Going to bed earlier, sooner, letting some things go until the next day! Actually spending seven to nine hours in my bed because if I’m not in my bed for those hours, how can I possibly sleep that amount?
The national sleep foundation also says: “One of the primary causes of excessive sleepiness among Americans is self-imposed sleep deprivation”.
We are doing this to ourselves. We are making ourselves absolutely exhausted, and I think we moms are probably at the top of the list of the most tired no matter the age of your child. We stay up late to get things done but then are in a constant cycle of exhaustion resulting in feeling like we have early alzheimer’s, spaciness, brain fog, wanting to nap during a wax, running into the garage door. Oh, and giving one kid two sandwiches in their lunchbox and another kid two drinks. Yes, that happened. Would it not have happened if I had slept better? Probably not.
We are victims of our own busyness, our own pressure to get things done, our own desire to do it all. We are victims of wanting to be the best mom we can be, the best wife we can be, the best friend we can be. But maybe, maybe we’d be better at everything if we just all said, “I have so much to do that I’m going to bed!”
With love and hope for more ZZZZZ’s……..