Has it really been so many years that it’s time for this already? I know, I know, it’s so tiny in the grand scheme of things. Even in just the grand scheme of parenthood, it’s nothing but a blip on the radar. Insignificant. Or, so you think, until it happens, and it WILL happen.
It comes with age, the years pass, and this has to change. It has to, there’s no other way, but you’re never fully prepared for how much something so small will affect your life, your mindset, your feelings, your entire friggin’ day– and it kind of pops out of nowhere, because things have been working so well as they are for SO long. Why fix what isn’t broken? Why change what’s worked for years upon years?
But you have to. You have to accept that times are changing. Life is changing. And things must change when life changes to adapt to the new route life is taking.
This includes bed times.
YES. I’M FREAKING OUT OVER THE CHANGING OF BED TIMES!
We had a good run. Nine long years with the SAME bed time was more than I could have ever hoped for. It couldn’t last forever, I knew that, but I wasn’t prepared to be dozing off by 9:30 and crawling into bed by 10:30 most nights. WHEN DID I GET SO OLD?? I guess hearing the songs I grew up with on the “oldies” station should have been a gentle nudge to coming to that realization, but NO. I refused to believe it. I still refuse! I’ve been a night owl my entire life, and suddenly, I find myself going to bed earlier and earlier some nights. If I stay up too late, it’s almost like I have a hangover the next morning, even if there was no alcohol involved before bed time.
And, of course, this would happen just as my 9 year old is asking to stay up later. It’s like he’s literally sucking the life-force out of me. Yeah! I’m blaming my tiredness on my children! 10 years ago, I was just leaving to go OUT at the time I am going to bed now.
This exhaustion has dredged up the creeping feeling of change I can’t seem to get away from these days. I’m well aware that my kids are growing up, but now I realize that I am growing down. Sooner rather than later, we will be ships passing in the night. My kids will be up late trying to cram for a test, or chatting with friends, or whatever the hell it is that kids do these days (I used to sneak online and use up our free AOL minutes) and I’ll be resting my weary old bones, being equally thankful to be past the bedtime battles stage, but missing the days where I could catch up on the DVR, work, have some drinks, and just relax for the hours after the kids went to bed. I need that time, and it’s slipping away!
Now, the question has really become- do I accept my little old lady ways and go to bed early to avoid nodding off in the middle of primetime television, or stay up late just to get those precious hours of ME time– the me that is the closest to who I was before kids- awake into the wee hours of the morning, doing whatever the hell I wanted.
The answer? …. I think I’m gonna have to sleep on it.
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