I’m nearly 36, but in my head, I still think of myself as being in my early 20s.
That is until I am woken up at 6am by my five year old son and begin to feel the pains from that short walk I took yesterday, while craving coffee because I feel like I haven’t gotten nearly enough sleep even though I was in bed by 10pm the previous night and I can’t help but fret over the three billion things that need to get done throughout the course of the day even though I’d much rather sit down and play video games for hours on end during the brief period of time between when the kids leave in the morning and when they get back in the evening and I have to get dinner ready and amuse them until bedtime when I can finally actually sit on my butt for about an hour before I simply must fall asleep.
(Just a quick note that although I didn’t mention my wife in any of the previous, she is most certainly involved in the work effort noted above. However, she doesn’t generally cause me to feel old, until I realize that we’ve been married for nearly 10 years now and have 401ks and a house and all sorts of other stuff that old people have).
I’ve had a difficult time in accepting adulthood. I feel I do it pretty well. Just a weekend ago I got complimented on my Dad-flexes (a term which refers to some fathers’ ability to have incredible reflexes when it comes to things like a child jumping to their death from the top of a slide…apparently there are a wide variety of youtube compilations under Dad Saves that you can watch if you’re interested, there’s also a reddit at reddit.com/r/DadReflexes). But accepting adulthood has been difficult.
That’s probably why I still think of myself as being in my 20s. Which can be problematic when I find myself with an opportunity to go out and enjoy some beverages until way past my bedtime. I find myself in need of recovering for weeks afterward. As I write this, I’m still recovering from a night out I had with my wife from weeks ago. And no, I don’t mean hangovers, because I’m awesome and rarely get them…kinda…I mean just the need to catch back up on sleep.
Of course, part of that is because when I was actually in my 20s, I could take a day to go into a brief coma and recover after weeks and weeks of poor sleeping decisions. Now as an adult, with kids, a two hour nap on the weekends happens only if the stars align perfectly where I’m caught up enough on tasks to feel I can take a break while also having the kids all nap at the same time as the puppy.
And all this talk I’ve had here has caused me to realize my biggest issue with adulthood…There just isn’t enough time for sleep.
Why isn’t there enough time for sleep?
I have never, in my life, wanted naps as regularly as I have since I’ve officially transferred over to adulthood and the opportunities for them are so few and far between. I’m not one of those folks who wishes I had listened to my parents more about naptimes as a kid, because I had energy then. I’m one of those people wondering why kids get all the luck and actually get forced to take naps when I end up having to use the downtime from parenting to do things like weed the garden.
So, I have determined a new life goal for myself, a new form of social responsibility. I’m going to find a way to change the social code in America to enforce a regular nap period. There’s science behind it, I promise.