Have you ever been so bone tired that you couldn’t really even think? You wander around just thinking of a nap. When your kids were small and you were up all night either with a newborn or someone who’s sick? Or just wake up and can’t go back to sleep for one reason or another?
As I’ve gotten older I find myself waking up and not being able to fall back to sleep. I’m either worried about something and there’s nothing like the middle of the night to feed into worry. Or my body is sore or I’m just not feeling tired anymore and want to get up.
My trouble is if I get up to early, I need a nap later in the day and then I find myself in a vicious cycle being “if I nap I might be adding to my not being able to sleep at night” dilemma. If you don’t nap you feel like a worn out dish-rag. So, what do you do?
Can you really make up for lost sleep? According to the experts it can be done but it needs to be done in a long time frame of adding an hour or two at a time. It can’t be done if you’ve had a long week and sleep for the entire weekend. It takes months.
I don’t know about you but when my blanket and my recliner are calling my name and I’m that bone weary tired, all I can think of is a 20 minute nap. I’ve also found as I’ve gotten older that I can’t take a 2 hour nap anymore and if I can close my eyes and just get a short one, it makes the world of difference.
But what about when you are “almost” sleeping. That feeling of “oh, I feel good” and your “almost” there and the dog barks? Or the phone rings? Or there’s one measly fly that insists on landing on your nose?” Then my mood for sleep is gone and I’m cranky and drug out for the rest of the day. I wake up early the next morning and the whole thing starts over…….
What about you, are you a napper? How much sleep do you get at night?
Yes! I can say so with my 9 week old baby boy! I am up every 3 hours on the dot at his command! twice during the night…broken sleep stinks! But his precious face makes me want to do it…too cute. I love naps! I love sleep! I love dreaming! Before Ben, I could sleep an easy 7-8 hours anywhere anytime, but now my mind & body are in the habit of waking up even when I get a night off thanks to my hubbie. But I tell myself, he’s got it go back to sleep, and I do! I really believe sleep, like everything, depends on the relationship you have with yourself. If you don’t control your mind, it controls you!
I have read that as we age we need less and less sleep. My mom also is the same as you Joy. She has much trouble sleeping more than 4 hours a night. She’s up by like 4 am even on the weekends!
Joy, have you ever tried one of those tapes or CDs for relaxation? I love falling asleep to the sound of waves or rain and Enya is great too. Have you heard Enya? Focusing on your breathing and if thoughts arise letting them go and going back to your breathing-works like a charm for me every time to relieve stress or to fall asleep.
Wow, your sleep cycle sounds almost exactly like mine – especially that part about how if you’re almost asleep and one thing happens to make you notice it then BOOM, sleep is out the window and you feel cranky all day.
I haven’t slept well for the past two-three years basically – I wake up a lot during the night and waking up feeling rested is a rarity. However, lately I’ve been adding an hour to my sleep every night and I’m getting about six-and-a-half to seven hours every night, which is good. Also, since starting work I haven’t been able to take naps – cause I’m at work all afternoon and evening.
I’m very good at sleeping when I have the opportunity. I’m a night owl, though. My ex-boss once said I was like a Mack truck – I take a long time to get going at first, but once I’m going, I have the stamina to keep going until at least 2am without even feeling tired. Those were the days before I had kids, and my job situation was flexible enough that I could sleep in pretty late most mornings. Now, I’m still a night owl by nature, but I have to get up at 7:30. Waking up is hell and I require several cups of coffee throughout the day, yet I have tons of mental energy at midnight. Since my ideal amount of sleep is 8 hours, I have to sneak a nap on some days. It has to be during business hours, since I have to take care of my kids the rest of the time.
My mom has sleep problems that sound like yours. It sounds like hell to me, to be tired and have time to sleep but be unable to sleep.
Nearly every day, I take a 1 to 2 hour nap – I sleep very poorly at night. When I’m stressed, I get nightmares. I haven’t had two nights of great sleep back-to-back in years.
When I was in language school, I would wake up Friday morning, and not go to sleep until Sunday night. Sometimes, I stayed up through Monday, but it depended on the lesson plan for that Monday. I partied all weekend long… add that lack of sleep to the nights stayed up because of first Sophie and then the twins… and I’ve been sleep-deprived for about 7-8 years. I joke that I’ll get plenty of sleep when I’m dead – although personally, I’d like to get some shut-eye a little sooner than that!
My night sleep patterns have changed drastically since I began my journey into perimenopause……. I wake more often at night, and almost always wake up at 3:00 or 4:00 AM, and then start thinking about stuff……. I often think about just getting up, but know that I will pay for that later in the day…
The thing that is funny though, is that I was always on an immediate inclination to wake up when my daughter was a baby, if I heard her move or cry, and I still sleep lightly as a result, and wake at the slightest thing….
I cannot nap; no matter how long I do it for, I wake up feeling like total crap. So, when I am up for the day, I am up.
I get an average of 7 hours of sleep a night. We go to bed around 11pm (too late) and I wake at 7am to get Bailey up for school. It takes me about an hour to fall asleep, that’s good for me. Before my beloved electric blanket it would take me sometimes up to 3 hours to fall asleep. I tossed and turned last night but that’s only because a lot is going on, a lot to worry about. Seems like I do all my worrying once I lay my head down. I can’t take naps unless I’m sick, I could never lay down and take a 20 minute nap. Those are the best naps for someone though. After 20 minutes your body goes into a deep sleep and you feel more tired than you did before you took a nap.
For those who have trouble falling asleep, I have some documents you can review and I guarantee you will be out like a light in no time.
Vanessa, that’s when my sleep drastically changed too, when perimenopause started. I never did have “night sweats” but the hot flashes hit me so bad I felt some nights like I was having a heart attack. One night when they were first starting, I almost woke up my husband. That’s how scared I was. Once I learned what they were of course, even though it was awful, I felt better. If I got up and took a cool shower I felt better but by that time, I’d lost over an hours sleep.
If I’m able to get a 20 minute nap I’m almost like new but something almost always interrupts me and then once that feeling of “I’m almost asleep” is gone, I’m a crabby a** because I can’t get it back. I’ve asked people not to call but they “forget” or someone comes over (UPS or mailman) or the dogs think that leaf falling off the tree is worthy of barking over!! If I take the phone off the hook then I worry that someone may need something so that doesn’t work either. The best yet is when I don’t answer and someone (my mom!) keeps calling over and over and then they say “oh, I thought you might be sleeping,” and I want to scream, “then why are you calling?” What’s wrong with people??
LMAO, Joy I can hear her saying that!!
I usually get about 7 hours of sleep a night. There are time when my body just craters and I try and fall asleep on the couch for a nap. This is when my kids especially my 9 year old loves to try and wake me up. They can’t stand it if I try and get a cat nap in!
anna, I get nightmares too when I am stressed or worried about something!! I wake up and tell my husband all the details…the other night I had a nightmare and 1/2 way woke up, eyes still closed, and felt paralyzed by fear…has anyone had that?
anna, meditation would give you that sleep if you practice it, or getting my feelings and stress out on paper always helps.
Tessa – meditation has helped, as does crocheting before bedtime (it clears my head). Unfortunately, it doesn’t make them go away, they’re just less frequent. I used to take pills, but that was hit or miss too, and I’d rather deal with it in a natural way.
I’ll tell you what will help – being able to sell our house so I can live with my husband again! But thank you for your advice! I’m glad I’m not the only one.
I sleep pretty well so far, but I’m seeing that as we age it gets worse! I can also nap and like to do that if I’ve been working all night or just am tired. 20 min naps are great. Any longer and I’m too tired when I do finally get up.
With your schedule and those late nights Sue, I bet you do need a nap!!!!
In Spain people live like this all the time. . . . they just call them Siestas instead of naps.