I Take Naps And I’m Not Ashamed

06Feb15

With age comes understanding. Well, on a few topics, on many topics I’m more baffled than I was decades ago. One thing I have a keen understanding of is how my body functions. I guess experience really is a great teacher, and I have over half a century of experience with this body.

I have come to understand that my body naturally wants to rest in the late afternoon. Call it a siesta, tea time or nap time, by four o’clock I need a rest. After scores of years fighting this tendency, I have come to embrace it in the last decade.

I take naps.

There, I said it (well, wrote it).

I take naps and I’m not ashamed.

There was a long time – like 25 years – when I thought there was something wrong with me for getting so tired before the end of the work day. I really beat myself up a lot about it.

I used to fight through that late afternoon slump with coffee, surgery snacks and brisk walks around the office. When I was able, I’d try to sneak in a quick little nap but they were few and far between. I could get away with it at home on the weekends, most of the time, but that was pretty much it.

When I worked at an AT&T retail store, I’d take a cat nap in my car during my lunch break – coincidentally that was usually somewhere between 3pm and 5pm. I’d read a little, eat my lunch then sleep a little. I felt so much better after my little rest break.

I have to say, the guys I worked with made fun of me in the beginning, but it made such a difference in how I felt for the rest of the shift, I didn’t care how much they kidded me.

For me a nap is like rebooting your computer. It’s rebooting my brain. It gives me a fresh start, resetting my emotions and eliminating fatigue. Maybe the people I worked with saw the difference in me because, one-by-one, they all started napping in their cars.nap-time-13

Now, I try to get a little sleep every afternoon. It doesn’t take a lot – fifteen or twenty minutes of actual sleep will suffice – more, like an hour, is better of course.

Can I power through my day without a nap? Yes, and I often have too. But, I feel a whole lot better if I can get just a little shut-eye late in the afternoon. My wife is supportive of my nap time – she likes me better with a nap then when I don’t have one.
Unlike some people who sleep during the day, I never – and I mean never ever – have trouble sleeping at night. I get up early because that’s when I’m most alert and productive. I have a really hard time staying up late – but that seems easier to do in Las Vegas for some reason.

A little nap in the afternoon and a hot cup of fully caffeinated coffee and I’m ready for anything.

I’m a napper and I’m proud to admit it.

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