Thursday, January 08, 2009

The other side of midnight

I have never liked going to bed.

In second grade, it was because when the night was over, I'd have to wake up and go back to school where my teacher was one step removed from The Wicked Witch of the West. Plus, I hated timed math tests. They made me feel like I had to pee, I would get so nervous.

On summer vacations with my family to Wisconsin, it was because going to bed marked the end of one more precious day of our limited time with my friends and cousins, whom we only saw once a year. 

In college, it was because I had lost one more day against the time I had to write seven to ten twelve-page papers for the end of any given semester (that's life as an English major). I asked for (and usually received) so many delayed due dates from my professors that my brother dubbed me the queen of extensions.

Nothing's changed now. I still hate going to bed. But you'd think I wouldn't, right? After all my griping and whining about how little sleep I get and how tired I am, you'd think I'd race to fall into bed and seek out the Land of Nod, wouldn't you? Turns out, not so much.

The thing is, I love being alone. There's something about being the only person awake in the house that feels so liberating. I can read as long as I want to, shop Amazon and daydream, organize my photos and music, plan blog entries, fold laundry, whatever. No one's around to interrupt, or roll their eyes if I end up reading "Outlander" again, or tell me to keep my feet off the coffee table (not that we're that kind of family, anyway), or pull the folded towels onto the floor. Again. There's no husband to share the remote with, no baby to step around and coo over when he starts tottering away from his secure hold on the couch, no mom to spend endless hours on the phone with.

And yet. There's no husband. No baby. No mom. Which can get kind of lonely, too.

And that's what finally gets me into bed these days. It's the knowledge that while the time alone is relaxing and recharging, it's the people in the daylight that make the relaxed, recharged me someone worth being around in the first place. 

Good night, Internets. See you in the morning.

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