Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sleep Like A Man

Accepted wisdom is frequently just unexamined wisdom. Generations of fathers have told family members reaching for the breadsticks or the tortilla chips at a restaurant that they are some kind of a scam that benefits the restaurant. There's no logical basis for thinking so. What could the restaurant gain from filling you up with cheap food and sending you home with your expensive entree in a box? Even if you left it behind, what do they get from it?

Still such saying persist. I cannot for the life of me fathom the meaning that lies in the old saying, 'sleeping like a baby'. I could get angry thinking about it (as in fact I did before sitting down to write this in a bid to defuse the fury). You're supposed to have slept like a baby if you did so deeply and without interruption, awaking fully refreshed. Which aspect of that is akin to any baby you've ever heard of, save for the terribly ill ones?

I'm no parent, but I was a baby once, and I periodically see them in person (though I must confess deliberately keeping my distance). Babies don't sleep well, do they? Not by any measure I am familiar with, they don't. They are known for few things more than sleeping in fits and starts, waking their parents numerous times every night with their fearsome bawling. I do have that correct, don't I? It seems to me that babies sleep terribly.

It's true enough, I guess, that their periods of restlessness are balanced out by equally lengthy periods of sleeping deeply enough to also worry their parents that way. I don't know that this is an ideal sleep model for an adult either. Days during which I sleep twelve to fourteen hours are invariably not among my most proud and productive. I certainly don't swell with pride when I speak of them. No, I'm afraid I must take babies to task: your erratic sleep patterns are nothing to be proud of, and I won't allow grownups to claim otherwise.


Frenchie said...

Such an interesting take! There are times when babies sleep soundly and scare new parents into waking that very sleep to make sure they are still breathing. This of course precipitating bawling and inconsolibility

Beverly said...

I spent many hours with you as an infant. You slept quite well!

Post a Comment

What say you, netizen?