Not bad for a fat girl


A Night Owl Living in an Early Bird’s World

Once again I sit here at my computer past the hour when I should be in bed. Why? Because I don’t want to go to bed! I don’t like going to bed. Oh sure, I’m perfectly happy once I’m there (most of the time) but the little kid in me still thinks I’m somehow going to miss out on something if I go to sleep.

1639839458_good_morning_comments_022_answer_1_xlargeThis thinking, fortunately, doesn’t extend to naps. That’s good news, because by the time the weekend rolls around I usually need one. My sleep debt hits its peak and I have to make up for it somehow.

Back in the day, I used to stay up late reading. Then I went to college. It seems like nothing fun ever began before 11:00 pm, so my natural night owl tendencies were rewarded and strengthened. After college my first real job started late in the day, so I still had no reason not to stay up late. This pattern continued for a while, until I decided to go to graduate school to become a teacher. What a rude awakening that was (I’m sorry, I couldn’t help myself).

Student teaching on the far side of town during the winter months of snow and ice required me to get up by 4:30 each morning. It was hell. I was used to just getting home around then. Still, I was motivated, so I adjusted. I also collapsed every day when I got home from school. I remember that time of my life as being sort of zombiesque.

Over the years I’ve managed to function pretty well in the regular world, in spite of my preference for late bedtimes and later wake up times. I’ve even begun waking up at about 7:00 am on the weekends for no good reason, other than it’s better than my weekday time of 5:20.  Still, over my breaks from school, I find myself staying up later and later and then sleeping in more and more. At one time I figured I would do best sleeping from about 2:00 to 9:00 each day, but now that I’m older, I’ll say about 1:00 to 8:00. Honestly any seven hours in a row would do me a world of good. Maybe it’s time to get off the computer and go to bed, but then again, I might miss something if I do.

What kind of hours do you keep? Are you an early bird or a night owl? And how much sleep do you typically get each night? I know that sleep patterns change over time; have yours?


Daily Prompt: The Golden Hour

“You can’t hoot with the owls and then soar with the eagles.”night owl

This quote, attributed to Hubert Humphrey, vice president under Lyndon B. Johnson, is displayed prominently on my mother’s refrigerator. It shares space with, “A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips,” and a warning not to eat processed meats, which have not been a part of her diet for as long as I can remember. I guess better safe, than sorry.

Personally I don’t agree. With any of it. I also don’t agree with covering your refrigerator in quotes, clippings, and inane magnets, but that’s another story all together.

Let’s get back to the owls and eagles thing. I have to assume that once upon a time it made sense for human beings to wake with the sun and sleep in the darkness most of the time. Of course it would have depended on what old homo sapiens was up to. Planting and tending crops required daylight, while hunting might have been a better activity for twilight or later, depending on the prey.

I think we’re pretty much past all of that. Like it or not we live in a more or less 24 hour world now, at least in much of the world. We’re globally connected, so working across times zones frequently means that we’re connecting to one another at different times of the day and night.  We also have far fewer restrictions on our activities based on time of day. You can buy your groceries, wash your car, or watch your favorite soap opera at 3 am if you desire.

Still, the whole world isn’t operating on the 24 hours open model. I’m a school teacher in a traditional school. The morning bell rings at 7:55 and by gum I better be ready when it does. In order for that to happen, and all of the things that lead up to it to happen, I have to be up by 5:25. It is unholy. Still, there are alternatives starting to emerge, such as online schools that operate with different schedules.

The world is moving away from the nine to five model. More people are telecommuting and more employers are recognizing that flexible scheduling can increase productivity, as our world economy continues to shift from manufacturing based to information based.

As for me, I’ve always thought that if I could go to bed at 2 am and wake at 9 am I would be at my most productive. Over the years, though, I’ve started waking earlier and earlier. Too many 5:25 alarms have warped my inner timepiece. Soar with the eagles, huh? Honestly, I’d rather be back in the nest.

6:00AM: the best hour of the day, or too close to your 3:00AM bedtime?