I’m a night owl.

I tend to get a second wind around 9:00PM, a perfectly acceptable hour to go to bed, and find it extremely difficult to quiet my racing brain to drift off to sleep. Conversations from earlier in the day, a nagging issue yet to be worked out, plans for the day ahead…all are fair game in the three-ring circus of my late-night brain.

Of course, having a baby can change all of that.

With a newborn and infant, you are wise to sleep at any chance you get. “Nap when the baby naps” is genius advice. It’s too soon for a schedule, each day is different from the last, and you catch your zzz’s any which way you can.

Fast forward to toddlerdom and things weren’t feeling much different. Having a toddler who napped poorly, didn’t sleep through the night, and couldn’t do either without being nursed to sleep first, made for lots of long days and nights. It took until well past the one-year mark for both my daughter and me to feel ready to be away from each other for an extended period of time; with that came the ability for her to sleep through the night.

Now, on most nights, my husband and I find ourselves with just-the-two-of-us time, and it’s great. We get to have grown up conversations, watch grown up television, and do grown up activities. It makes me feel so normal to once again have this uninterrupted time with my husband. And yet, on several nights during the week, I find myself sending my husband up to bed while I remain downstairs.

Why? Because as much as I love my time with my husband, I also crave “me” time.

I became accustomed to spending time alone as a Resident Assistant in college. One of the perks of the job was having my own room, which meant no roommates, a door I could shut, and a space where I could do whatever I wanted. All these years later, I still appreciate the time I get to myself; it just comes about less often. Which is where I find myself now, staying up to unreasonable hours, just to find that alone time. Or, because I’m not operating under zombie-like conditions at all times, I’m often back to my distracted, racing-mind state in the evenings.

I’m fairly confident that the novelty of late-night time to myself will wear off, a decent night’s sleep will win out again, and I’ll find ways to work my “me” time into the daytime hours. Until then, if you need me at 11:30 at night, I’ll probably be up pondering the fact that my daughter most likely inherited her terrible sleep habits from me.

 

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