Before I became a dad, I could easily get away with staying up until 11:30 pm on a work night. Nearly 17 months later my brain has not caught up with my body in this regard.
My body has a natural alarm clock and even before my daughter was born I would usually wake up between 5:30 and 6:00 am. The difference between then and now is back then I had roughly two hours to do whatever I wanted in the morning. I would work out, check my email, watch the news, leisurely eat my breakfast, etc. This is not the case anymore.
I still wake up at the same time, but it is usually because of a little girl in the next room crying and calling for Mama. Being the awesome husband I am, I usually get up and go get her and bring her into bed with us for a few minutes. After that, in addition to my wife and I both getting ourselves ready in the morning, we also have to get the kid ready too.
Bottom line – my mornings take a lot more energy now. I am usually ready for a nap by the time I leave for work.
The solution to this is to go to bed earlier each night, but after my daughter’s 8:30 pm bed time it is the only time my wife and I have together to discuss the day and watch TV. There lies the conflict. Should I sacrifice time with my wife and all of the good TV shows in order to get a longer night sleep? I try to do a little bit of both. Most nights we go to bed sometime in the 10 pm hour, but last night was an exception because of a particularly enthralling episode of WWE Monday Night Raw. Yes, I am a wrestling fan. I am not a fan of any other sport, but I love pro wrestling. I am familiar with a beautiful thing called DVR, but a) some things just aren’t the same unless you watch them when they originally air and b) we never get around to watching most of the things we DVR. So it goes.
The nights when I go to bed an hour or so earlier, I feel like a completely different person in the morning. If I am able to get my run in that morning too, I feel even better. I drive to work those mornings thinking “Wow, I need to do this every morning! I think I’m going to bed early tonight too.” Those are always the nights I am up extra late. Figures.
One of these days I am convinced that my body and my brain will catch up to each other and I will get the proper night sleep each and every night. Sadly, I have a sneaky suspicion that this will have to wait until my daughter is grown and moves out…which I am not rushing at all. So it goes.