Tag Archives: night owl

Catching some shut eye

Sleep means different things to different people. There is a lot more to the science of sleep than the oft-discussed night owl vs. morning bird.

When there is an infant in the house, the baby typically cries each time you put him or her down, so you learn to  maintain a rhythm that keeps baby happy, and that also enables you to sleep walk. And the next day, at work, you unconsciouly tap out that rhythm on the carpet.

But before the kids came along there existed a time when you could stay out late, watch movies, and still have a never-ending chat with your friends, and continue to feel rejuvenated; a time when you went straight to work the next day, looking fresh and ready to take on the day, without having slept a wink.

Even before this phase was the time in college, when the concept of sleep was alien. When you studied hard, and had lots of fun.

So, coming back to the kids. Your infant suddenly grew into a busy toddler, whom you chased under tables, and up and down staircases, whom you pushed on swings and caught at the bottom of slides. And then, when your toddler was all tucked into bed, and you looked forward to catching a few winks, the said toddler came crying with pain in his calf muscles or some such.

Then, suddenly, your teenagers and tweenagers had become independent creatures, and disappeared into their coccoons. And you said,  “I can finally catch some shut eye.”

                       Picture courtesy – Clipart Panda
But now, sleep plays truant. You sleep well some days and stay awake on some days. You ponder about life and wonder about what lies ahead. You look at the stars and marvel at the universe, and then worry that the alarm will ring in a few hours.

 And then again, there are those afternoons when you get two hours to yourself (the luxury…), and you make plans to read a book or watch a movie, and as you recline on the couch to enjoy the book or the movie, your eyes close involuntarily. 

Sleep….

Advertisements

Golden ray

I am a night owl.  I am at my best  only after sundown. Waking up early in the morning is a huge challenge, more so because I read late into the night. It doesn’t help any when other members of your family are early, chirpy birds. Grrrrrrrr…….!

Last week, we had a mid-week holiday and that meant I could sleep-in. I snuggled deeper into my quilt. I could sense that the rest of my family was up and bustling, but I was not going to wake up. No way.

image

              Courtesy – http://www.123rf.com

I must have fallen into a deep sleep, when I heard my son’s shrill voice, “Mom, mom…wake up, wake up.”

I said, “Shhhhhh…go away.”

But talk about persistence. He kept on calling out, and started shaking me.

When I could take it no more, I opened an eye and snapped with irritation, “WHAT?”

I struggled to sit up and my son said, “Mom, see golden dust…isn’t it beautiful.”

The blinds were open just a little bit, and through that gap, the first golden rays of sunlight were streaming in.

Despite the rude awakening I could only smile at his excitement.

If I had seen this on my own, I would have pulled the blinds shut and gone right back to sleep. But, thanks to my son, I sat up and watched the golden rays streaming in, making the floor glow. Little particles danced with joy, as my son moved his hand in and out of the ray of light.

I was nearly awake. A strong cup of coffee was all it took to help me take on the day.

Early bird or Night Owl?

With certain things in our lives there are no ambiguities.  In one of my earlier blogs, I had written about Coffee vs. Tea. Most people are either coffee drinkers or tea drinkers. There are very few people, who would claim to fall in the common area of the Venn diagram between the two.

Similarly, I have noticed that people are either Morning people or Night people.
In my own family, there is a clear demarcation between the Night Owls and the Early Birds

Both these types exhibit distinctive traits. Early risers are chirpy, and so, so annoyingly productive, as the Sun moves across the sky. Their energy levels peak till lunch time, after which their battery slowly drains. By 8 pm, they are low on enthusiasm and are grouchy companions.

On the other hand, the Night Owls cannot open their eyes when the Sun looks into their windows. Alarms at their loudest, barely manage to cut through one leathery layer of sleep. Persistent and annoying alarms are a must. When the night owl wakes up, stay away till they have their caffeine-fix or whatever else it is that they need to jolt awake. These people mechanically perform their chores till about lunch time, after which they are fully awake.  Their enthusiasm starts peaking late in the afternoon, as they effortlessly finish their chores. By dinner, they are at their happiest best.

Most families have combinations of these two types and there are always family stories about members who have never seen a sunrise or about members who have never stayed up till midnight.

I am a loyal Night Owl Club member. Mornings are like midnight. How I wake up everyday baffles me. I love the quiet after everyone goes to sleep – catching up on work and my reading…can’t go to sleep without a book.

So what are you? A Night Owl or an Early Bird? Would love to know