Sleep. There is something kind of romantic about it, no? It is a time of rest and renewal, a time to let your dreams run wild, and wake up feeling refreshed and ready to face the day. It is an intimate moment that can be shared by two people, and when children go to their parent’s side when they are scared.
People spend hundreds on what they wear during sleep, and thousands on the beds themselves, in the promise of a glorious night. There are endless books and articles written on how to get a good night’s sleep, even teas and tablets to guarantee a restful night. In short, sleep is a therapeutic time of rejuvenation.
Or so I hear. For me, the story is a little different. I am writing this at 2:37am.
I have a severe love-hate relationship with sleep. It is similar to an old married couple, in which I am the bitter old husband. Much like the husband, I rely on sleep far more than I would ever admit. I am tired constantly and I have a nap every day just to function properly. Without huge amounts of it, I would be incapacitated.
But also like the husband, I fight it at every turn. I put off going to sleep at night, despite my eyeballs falling out of my head simply because, well, I can’t be bothered. I know that sounds crazy, but when you’re sitting on your couch and you hear sleep screaming your name, exhaustion takes over.
The last thing you want to do is get up, take your make up off, wash your face, brush your teeth, get out of your clothes, into your pyjamas and get in to bed. I don’t even go to bed late! I’m usually in bed by 9:30 and I can get to sleep in an instant, but does it make any difference to my cravings of that shut-eye? Absolutely not.
I told you we had a dysfunctional relationship.
Not to mention, that when I do end up going to sleep, it never feels ‘luxurious’ or ‘refreshing’ or what other bullshit people selling you mattresses spin. Recently, I’ve been waking up during the night, often unable to get back to sleep, hence why I am writing this at now 2:49am. Not only does this mean less sleep during the night, sleeping in to catch up in never an option. Every day my body shakes me awake at 5:30am. Prisons don’t even do that!
And you can save your “well why don’t you just go back to sleep?” thanks. I’ve tried. Believe me I’ve tried, but for my short 20 years on this planet, it hasn’t happened. I envy people who can sleep in, I really do, but it is a talent I do not possess. I come from parents who can survive on 5 hours of sleep on the regular so I’m going to blame genetics.
When I wake up, it’s nothing like you see on a mattress ad (“Bellissimo” my ass). I wake up bitter that it is so early, usually something hurts because I’ve been sleeping on it weirdly, and desperate to pee, but unable to go because my body is like an iPhone – it takes 20 years to wake up.
Sleep is a massive business these days with experts and self-appointed experts (looking at you Lorna Jane and Pete Evans) all having a say and selling the “latest innovation in sleep”. Forget all of those teas, oils and nutrients, I want something that will send me to sleep in an instant, and wake me up when I choose. No more of this waking up during the night, no more feeling ripped off because I can’t sleep in. Where’s the tablet that does that, huh?
Perhaps I should invent it. Yeah, when I wake up in 2 hours and 18 minutes, that’s what I’ll do. Until then, I’m going to try to reach the elusive sleep again. Wish me luck.
All my love, Chelle