I have something revolutionary to share with you. I know, truly, you won’t believe it but you will once you’ve successfully tried it.
I’ve been a night owl for as long as I can remember. At New Year’s Eve parties as a child, I was almost always the last one awake, playing monopoly until the wee hours of the morning. If my eyes dared to close for longer than a half second, I would have buckets of ice water on stand-by to dunk our heads into. Extreme? Not for me! There is something exhilarating about being awake when the rest of the world is asleep. So much can be accomplished. As a traveler, I would relish my last night in any country by staying awake and taking in the last treasured moments. As a mother, I get to fold laundry without my kids knocking it on the floor while watching anything I want! Both are exhilarating in their own, distinct ways.
When darkness encapsulates my house, it beckons me to relish a book, some precious alone time or a sweet treat that I alone get to enjoy! Sometimes, when my day is packed with question after question after question with absolutely zero moments of solitude, all I can do is patiently wait for that moment of peace and quiet when everyone else in the house is asleep and I squeal (quietly) with excitement…..I know you share this same pleasure, and that is exactly why my news is even more important to you.
Because even though I know we share this secret pleasure, we also suffer the drastic hangover from sleep deprivation. It might not hit after the 1st, 2nd, or even 19th night of finally collapsing into bed somewhere around 2:00am, but when it hits, not even the kids holding a freight train alarm clock up to our ears could move us. There are definitely mornings that I could sleep and have slept past my children’s waking and have the hardest time actually kindly greeting the morning…or mid-morning sun. I can chit-chat with friends and then not remember what in the world we talked about because sleep deprivation has set in. I’ve realized my night owlish ways combined with 4 young children are not conducive and so I’ve been trying to alter my ways. Several months ago, I set a goal of going to bed 30 minutes earlier. Okay, so I really started out with 10 minutes earlier and felt like that was a huge success. Some nights, I failed miserably in achieving this goal but other nights I was successful. Little by little things got better.
Believe it or not, after months of 30 minutes earlier, I actually put myself to bed at 10:30pm instead of 1:30am! And that was when everything changed and started making a tad more sense.
Truly, it has been an eye opening experience. That morning when my alarm went off at 5:30am to wake up with my husband, instead of falling back asleep and drooling until my children were able to pull me out of bed around 7:30am or 8:00am, I woke up…wait for it….REFRESHED! It was a crazy, rush of a feeling. And not only that, but I saw the SUNRISE and I had the opportunity to enjoy that oh, so-craved-for precious silence we get in the middle of the night BEFORE the hectic rush of the day begins. You know what I noticed…my days aren’t as hectic! I get to greet my kids when they wake up and giggle with them as I sing them a good morning song instead of hitting their foreheads in a vain attempt to snooze them.
Now, I have to admit that I am no where near perfect. I’ve still had some late night moments, but I do actually crave getting to bed earlier so I can have my time in the morning instead of in the middle of the night. So to all my fellow night owl mamas, I’m turning in my resignation and I’m going to enjoy the silence and peace that comes in the morning. I dare you to try it out and see what a difference it makes.
Before this challenge, I was pretty consistent around 1:00am sometimes as late as 3:00am.
Let’s do a quick poll…what time do you usually go to bed?
And for all you mommas who go to bed at 8:00pm or 9:00pm, please share your tips because I still cannot even fathom that!