I’m a night owl. Always have been. I am at my best — in terms of energy, creativity, and mood — late in the evening and in the wee hours of the morning. And, the flip side of this being that I am absolutely not a morning person.
I blame it on being born at 3 am.
Anyway, the world is not made for night owls, for the most part. The nine-to-five life is not for us. When I lived in Japan, my schedule was actually almost perfect for me. I started work at noon, and finished at nine, and I never felt more like I was in my elephant.
But generally speaking, life’s not like that. We have to adapt to the regular work day, so we drag our sorry arses out of bed early for work, and we try to train our brains to go to sleep at a reasonable hour at night, so we can do it all again the next day.
Therein lies one of my problems. I don’t want to go to bed early. And consequently, sometimes my brain doesn’t relax. So I lie in bed, and while my body begins to relax and get ready for slumber, my mind isn’t ready yet.
And it begins to wander. To a lot of, quite frankly, stupid places.
Especially when I’m home alone with That Girl, like I am from time to time with BDH’s work or soccer schedule. As was the case last night.
For whatever reason, the dark and a quiet house seems to be excellent fodder for an imaginative, not-tired mind like mine. And it begins to wander. Every little noise is magnified into a huge, and largely implausible, crisis.
I KNOW THIS. And yet, does it stop it from happening? NO IT DOES NOT.
Last night, here’s what I imagined: BDH getting into some sort of accident driving home after midnight from work. Me getting the call to go to the hospital in the next city, and having to pack up myself and That Girl to go to the hospital. Me getting into an accident going to see him in the hospital. Me having a hassle from police at the scene of the accident, who keep me from my poor injured spouse in emergency…
You see where this is going, right? Now. Imagine me, in bed, thinking of all this, and PLANNING WHAT TO DO IN CASE ALL THESE IMPLAUSIBLE THINGS HAPPEN.
Now, as you can imagine, none of this DID happen. And BDH was home shortly after midnight and up with Stinkerbelle comforting her during a bad dream.
So what gives, drama llama brain?
Other nights, it goes something like this: someone’s going to break into the house and take my sleeping child out of her bed. Now, bear in mind that my daughter’s room is on the second floor, and she’d holler blue murder if you tried to wake her from a sound sleep. And pity the fool who didn’t know to bring ALL her favourite friends and blankies with her…
Yet, here I am, LEAPING OUT OF BED AND INTO THE HALLWAY at the sound of the house settling. Like a Crazed Kidnapping Psychopath is going to come THROUGH THE FRONT DOOR and UP THE STAIRS. Of Our House, in the Middle of Our Street. And, dumber still, be stopped from committing his heinous crimes by a FAT HOUSEWIFE IN HER UNDERWEAR.
You see what I am saying?
But that’s okay, because the next noise has me leaping and checking out the window. IN CASE THE KIDNAPPING PSYCHOPATH HAS A LADDER AND COMES THROUGH THE WINDOW. IN ZERO DEGREE WEATHER.
And like I wouldn’t hear it all happening THROUGH THE BABY MONITOR WE STILL HAVE.
Yeah. So. That makes sense.
But that’s okay. Because when I run out of far-fetched scenarios to worry about, I’ll just rehash life’s everyday worries, stressful events, and horrible news stories. OVER AND OVER AGAIN.
You’d think, after a few thousand of these nights, I’d learn. And yet? Not so much.
So, after a night of irrational worry, I wake up the next morning having less than optimal sleep time, and before my brain’s best time for being awake under the best of circumstances. So I spend much of my morning sucking back more caffeine than should be allowed by law and stumbling about in an irrational stupor.
I’m a treat, I can tell you.
So what I need is this: a fabulously-paying creative job with flexible work hours, and the staff to keep tabs on my family while I sleep. And maybe guard the place. Just to be on the safe side.