Monday, October 22, 2012

I'll Sleep When I'm Dead...

A lot of famous poets had a good deal to say about sleep:
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep. 
 -Robert Frost
Death, so call'd, is a thing which makes men weep,
And yet a third of life is pass'd in sleep. 
-Lord Byron 
But I subscribe to the wisdom of the late Warren William Zevron.  Who wrote this song, just so you have some basis for his amazingness:

Apparently you have to watch "Werewolves of London" directly on YouTube, but I assure you, it is well worth the 3 minutes and 17 seconds it will cost you.  Because the song might be the most perfect song ever created by mankind.

Zevron said, "I'll sleep when I'm dead."

Why such morose subject matter this posting, you ask?  I'll tell you. 

Three random encounters with peripheral neighbors, acquaintences and a random person at the grocery store, all offered up the same advice:

Enjoy your sleep now.  Enjoy.  Your.  Sleep.

It's a strange piece of advice to offer up to a couple.  Don't get me wrong -- I fully understand that babies will keep you up and don't abide by our schedules.  But I can think of so many other things I'd rather do than sleep.

Here is a list of just some of them:

  • Bake a cake.
  • Eat a cake.
  • Play video games.
  • Watch a scary movie.
  • Watch a lot of scary movies.
  • Read a book.
  • Write a book.
  • Draw.
  • Paint.
  • Hike a mountain.
  • Swim in a lake.
  • Run a race.
  • Go on a date.
  • Go on multiple dates.
  • Go on multiple dates where cake might be consumed.
  • Eat a cake.
See?  Plenty of variety here.  Why then are we so obsessed with catching our REMs?  Not to be confused with the following:

Because, frankly, Michael Stipe doesn't look that fast.

Of all the things to long for once the baby is here, is sleep really the number 1 priority?  All the things you could miss and sleep is what you tell others to make sure they go out and attain?

In full disclosure -- I've never been much of one for sleep.  While I'm sure most family will remember me as a late sleeper, it's mostly because I'd stay up into the wee hours of the morning reading or writing or playing video games.

When one doesn't actually fall asleep until close to 3 or 4 in the morning, 9 or 10 o'clock can hardly be seen as "sleeping in." 

At one point it got so bad that I only really saw a few hours of sunlight in the winter.  I'd fall asleep just before dawn and wake up in the afternoon.  

Furthermore, I don't fully believe that whole "you'll never sleep again" mantra.  There's some evidence to the contrary:

1. Not every parent I know looks like this:
Babies!  Babies have made us this way...

2. If it was as bad as people describe it, no one would have multiple children:

The Duggars.  Yes, those are all siblings.

3.  Okay.  There is no 3.  But 1 and 2 should illustrate the point.

I'm grateful for the advice.  Don't get me wrong.  Well wishes with a tacked-on heads-up is much appreciated.  I just don't get why that's the solitary piece of advice people deem the most important.

I'm thankful that my years of being a night owl are finally going to pay off.  The past 30ish years of my existence have just been training for the weeks, months and years ahead.   As luck would have it, I married an early bird.  So while she and the baby catch the worm, I can catch my ZZZs.  Or, at least, what little I need.  As long as I am not busy baking a cake.

Because that is the advice I will impart on the fathers that come after me.  

"Bake your cakes now!  Bake all the ones you can.  You won't have time for that stuff once the baby gets here."

Totally unsolicited baking advice from a stranger.  It's a good thing.

No comments:

Post a Comment