Thursday, January 30, 2014

Change Modus Operandi!

I  admit this freely that I am a major night owl!

I have been the majority of my life as a matter of fact. It started early in my life with not having a regular (and early) bedtime. While our neighbors across the road rarely were up past 9:30 at night, except on extremely rare and special occasions, in my home -with my grandparents and mom and me -the lights rarely got turned off before midnight. More often than not, someone of the adult population here was still up until around 1 a.m. on most any given night. That someone was usually my mom -busily attending to last minute details on cleaning or straightening up things in the house or else, she was busy sewing for herself, for me, for neighbors who brought things to her to have her alter some item of clothing.

I don't remember ever going to bed before 11:30 p.m. even as a pre-schooler mainly because there were certain radio programs on at the late hours that my grandparents loved to listen to -as did my Mom -so, naturally I did the same too. (The fact that by the time I was 5 years old I had also become afraid of the dark and didn't want to go upstairs to bed by myself so I would often wait it out till my Mom was ready to call it a day and go upstairs -just so I wouldn't be alone there.)

The funny thing about my fear of the dark though is the fact that when I was 2-3 years old, I had no fear of that! Our bathroom was not the normal type of bathroom that you see today in that it was in the basement of the house -having been installed at some point well after the house was built, like an after thought you know -and as such, the commode was behind a little stall at the foot of the cellar steps and the tub was clear at the other end of the basement, located in the "laundry room" along with two stainless steel wash tubs, the wringer-washer and a small coal stove called a "bucket a day" because it took about a bucket of coal per day to keep a fire going in it and that fire was responsible for heating our hot water therefore, there was a fire in this little old stove every day of the year!

Well anyway -enough of that explanation about the bathroom locale. I was "Grandpa's Girl" and adored him to the point of following almost every move he made back then. Upstairs, on the main floor, he didn't object to this but there were times when he really didn't want, definitely didn't need me being his tail and those times generally involved going to the basement either to use the commode or to bathe. But, to his chagrin, no matter what he did to try to escape me, I managed to pop up right behind him anyway. And, finally he tried going down to the basement area without turning the lights on, figuring that would keep me upstairs and give him some privacy but when he finally arrived in the laundry room one night -in the total darkness -and reached up to pull the chain on the light there -imagine his surprise when he heard a little voice behind him saying "Hi, Grandpa!"

That night he apparently had reached his limit of patience and ideas how to escape this child as he grabbed me and took me back upstairs, planting me firmly in my Mother's lap with instructions to her to "Keep this Gol-durned kid up here so I can take a bath!" How I managed to follow him through the darkness and had not one iota of fear then but sometime later, I developed a terrible fear of the dark that lasted for many, many years. Probably still have some of that in me and maybe that's why I can't sleep unless I have the tv set on too. But yet, I think nothing of going outside at 1, 2 even as late as 3 a.m. -flashlight in hand -and walking the dog. Go figure that combination out now will ya.

But anyway, obviously I stay up late -often very late. I've been known to finally crawl into bed at 5 or 6 a.m. because I was pre-occupied with some craft item or a good book or something I was really "in to" researching online -occasionally baking or cooking some item too -especially before Christmas when I needed to bake cookies. What better time to do things like this -especially with children in the house who would be disruptive to the cookie baking projects in particular.

I've tried when scheduling appointments to get all of the scheduled for at least 1 p.m. -preferably a little later than that otherwise I have conflicts then with my potential lack of a reasonable sleep plan.

And now, I find myself concerned tonight about an appointment I have scheduled for this morning. I have to be in Dubois -which is about a 44 mile drive one-way from here -at 10 a.m. which means to get there on time I will have to leave here around 9 a.m. at the latest and to do that, to be ready to leave by then, means I will have to be up and at 'em, as the old expression goes, by 7 a.m.

Two hours to get ready? I used to be able to get up, shower, dress and be out the door and on my way to work or wherever in 30 to 45 minutes tops. Ah, those were the days, to be sure.

Now, it's get up and put a pot of coffee on. Do my blood sugar test before eating anything. Make sure to find something easy to fix for a very light breakfast -mainly to have something in my stomach before taking my regular medications so they don't make me nauseous otherwise. Then, shower, and take care of the now regular routines after a shower which takes up an extra 5-10 minutes time. Dressing, if I don't already have it planned out what I am going to wear, becomes problematic because that involves making a major decision ya know -what to wear, what to wear. Drink some coffee. Sit down at the computer and check my e-mail -mainly to clear out all the junk e-mail to get down to the arrival of the daily online version of a local newspaper and skim over that and check the obituaries there. Make sure my name isn't in that column and then I can slide over to a brief check too of my Facebook to see if there's anything exciting or interesting posted there. Go get a refill of the coffee, or maybe it's a 2nd refill time already. Remember then too to take those darned meds that I ate that food to make my body able to digest the meds too!

And then, about 1/2 hour to 15 minutes before I want to leave, make sure to take the dog out for a walk or ELSE! You know what that "or ELSE" involves then, I'm sure!

So by this time I closing in on the 2 hours time I have given myself to be ready to go.

Time to stop and look around to survey the situation again and make sure I haven't overlooked anything.

And for me to do this between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. -is a rude awakening adjustment to my normal wake up activities and my system tends to want to reject all of this at every turn it seems.

I've been trying to drop my bedtime from what had become very much the norm of 3 a.m. to actually going to bed as early as 1 or 2 a.m. with not too much success. Tonight now, with the anticipated need to be up by 7 a.m., I'm ready to hit the sack now and surprise, surprise -it is not yet 1 a.m.

To be a bit on the safe side about waking up in the a.m. now, my older daughter is to call me between 6:30 and 7 a.m. and I just hope she doesn't forget that she's supposed to do that now too because I don't have an alarm clock to wake me up!

I'll let you know later how my change of operations here worked out -hopefully, I will rise and shine and make my appointment on time but you can be sure, I'm going to make it known to my counselor "Never again! No more morning appointments!"


terri said...

I hope all goes well for you and that you get up and out the door on time.

My Jake is a lot like you. He's a night owl through and through and has such a hard time getting going in the morning. Me, on the other hand... I'm an early bird. I have all of my energy in the morning but can barely keep my eyes open past 10 pm.

Suldog said...

It's odd, Jeni. I think most who know me would consider me a morning person, but I think I'm BOTH. I love being up early when the world is quiet, listening to the birds sing, etc., but I also very much enjoy the late night hours. I think I like quiet, more than anything else!

Sandi McBride said...

I hear it isn't good to get less than 7 hours of sleep a night...I am lucky if I get 4 and with 5 its a bonus...I know you will get the hang of it...I always wondered how you functioned with as little sleep as you seem to get,'s to a good night