Day Nine: naps
I am the master of naps. I may get a crappy quality of sleep at night but, my God, can I nap. The irony of this is that I apparently point blank refused to nap throughout my entire childhood, much to the despair of my parents. Maybe I’m making up for lost time now. Even prior to my CFS diagnosis I could sleep for queen and country. If I didn’t set an alarm and was left to my own devises I could quite easily sleep through until the middle of the afternoon. I envy those people who wake up at 7am on the dot regardless of what day it is and rise from their beds refreshed, alert and ready to face the day. Did I say envy? I meant I want to punch them in the face. I genuinely can’t remember the last time I woke up feeling any of those things. And so, naps became a big part of my life. According to the National Sleep Foundation (hello? talk about best job ever. where do I sign up?) naps restore alertness, enhance performance, and reduce accidents. NASA recommends napping to their astronauts as a method of improving productivity in space. There are also proven psychological benefits, so that’s awesome too. Of course there are negative effects to daytime sleeping. There’s that oh so pleasant groggy, disorientated feeling that you’re sometimes left with, and apparently if you’re already at risk of heart failure it will further increase your chances of checking out early.
My personal advice for a stellar napping experience? Drink a strong cup of coffee right before you settle down. You’ll have mental dreams but you’ll feel so much better for it on the other side. Another tip is to be aware of your surroundings. I once fell asleep with my face planted on my desk only to discover when I woke that I had been leaning on my wrist as I slept, resulting in a perfect impression of my watch in the centre of my forehead. Not a good look when you work with the general public…or, you know, people of any kind. Also beware sheet crease marks and patterns left on the skin by fancy throws/blankets. They’ll make you look stupid.