Learn from yesterday, live for today, look to tomorrow, rest this afternoon.
I usually take a two-hour nap, from one to four.
Don’t bother me, Imma take a nap now.
-She’s a Maineiac
Let’s face it, life is full of stress. There are very few moments in the average day when you can contentedly sit back and say, “Yeah, this is the stuff. Life can’t get much better than this. I’m happy. I’m good.”
Except for the rare time when the planets align and the thought hits: You could be taking a nap right now. After all, no one’s around. It’s quiet. You have no place to be. And your favorite blankie is fresh out of the dryer all steamy-hot goodness, just begging to be snuggled with during a restorative afternoon siesta.
Good satisfying naps are precious, they need to be savored. But the best naps are elusive because they easily throw your body’s inner clock for a loop. You have to be careful you don’t sleep too much. I did that once, woke up and thought it was the year 2078. At the same time, they need to be long enough so you don’t wake up more tired and groggy than before the nap. Once I slept for three minutes, woke up and thought it was 1978 again. It’s a delicate balance of time.
The worst is when you wake up and it’s pitch dark. For some odd reason if this happens to me I lose all sense of my identity, place or time in history. I immediately think, Holy hell! Did I sleep all day and into tomorrow night? Or maybe I slept for an entire year and missed out on the season finale of The Good Wife?
Sometimes I’ll awaken to the faint sounds of my kids clanging around in the other room and I’ll think, Who the devil is making those noises? I have kids? For these times, it helps if you sleep with your teddy bear for that extra comforting when you honestly don’t know what day it is or who you are anymore.
When the chance for a nap strikes, don’t hesitate. This opportunity happens to me only once every five years or so.
Yesterday was one of those days. I had just finished eating a satisfying lunch, sat down on the couch and suddenly my eyes grew heavy. I said to my husband, “You know what? I’m gonna take a nap. Don’t bother me for thirty minutes or I’ll kill you.”
Then I hightailed it for the bedroom, locked the door behind me and jumped into our king-sized bed, all giddy with anticipation. There’s something so deliciously evil about taking naps. It’s like you’re saying to the world, “You know what? Screw you. I’ve had enough.”
And this nap was brilliant. My pillow was perfectly fluffed. The sun cast a warm beam of light across the bed. I laid my weary head down and fell swiftly into the first stage of sleep, strange images of Eminem* sitting on my living room couch and eating a mountain of popcorn drifting though my subconscious. Oh yeah, I like popcorn too, Eminem…..yeah…..I’d also like to try that giant strawberry swirling around your head….sooooo goooood….okay, now your entire head is the strawberry? Fine, I’ll still eat it…..Then I was completely gone. Deep sleep. I knew I was drooling all over my pillow and didn’t care. I felt the cool puddle against my cheek and still continued to eat popcorn and strawberries with Eminem, world be damned. Because that’s when you’re truly living. That’s when the magic happens.
You know what? I’ll stop writing here. I think I’ll go take another nap now.
*this was the actual dream I had, don’t judge. If anyone knows what the symbols popcorn and strawberries mean in a dream, let me know. If anyone knows why the hell I dreamt of Eminem, let me know.