Grownups Need to Be Told to Go to Bed

So I get home from work yesterday, and I’m just exhausted. No idea why. It wasn’t a really stressful day at the library or anything, but I was pretty darn tired. To make matters worse, I discover that I’m really grumpy and short tempered to boot. (Does that happen to any of you? You realize you’re grumpy and want to not be grumpy, but you seem to be stuck in one gear and can’t get out of it? That was me.) My family suffers through me through dinner, and then I just put my head down on the table and found myself almost snoozing off right then and there.

Denisa suggested I might want to go to bed.

Seemed like a good idea to me. At 7pm last night, I went to bed just to take a break for a bit.

I woke up at 7am, 12 hours later.

It’s so easy to look at my kids and know when they’re tired. They become different people, almost. They’re more easy to upset, they argue more often, they get grumpy–and it’s really easy as an adult to just tell them to go to bed and sleep. You know what? I think every grownup needs to assign a person to be in control of their sleep schedule. Someone who can take an objective view of what the grownup is doing, and then order him or her to bed when they just need more sleep.

I know what you’re thinking–you’re thinking that you know what’s best for you, and you know how much sleep you need, and you don’t need somebody to tell you when to go to bed. You know who else makes those exact same arguments?

My kids.

We’re not that different from children, when you get down to it. It’s not like someone waves a magic wand when we turn 18 and leave home and suddenly we need less sleep. I’m sure this would apply in other areas as well. Someone to step in and tell us when we’re behaving like a jerk and need to apologize. Someone to tell us when we need to share our toys, or when we need to stop eating.

Maybe it’s a copout. Maybe we’re here on earth so we can learn how to do all that without a grownup telling us to. That’s why I’m not going to advocate for anything more than assigning someone to tell us when to go to sleep.

I’m feeling much better this morning, thanks for asking. I don’t feel foggy-headed, I’m not grumpy, and I’m not overwhelmed with everyday tasks. Sleep is our friend, and sometimes we need someone else to step in and remind us that no, checking Facebook for an hour and then playing World of Warcraft for another hour is really not as important as sleeping for both of those hours.

My advice? Find someone in your life who you’re in contact with a fair bit. Someone who knows what’s going on in your life. And authorize that person to be able to order you to bed. Then, when they do (and they will), remember why you authorized them to do that . . .

And go to sleep.

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