The calendar may say the days get shorter and the nights get longer ever since the start of summer.
But the coming week will turn that all around in my house and many others in the area. The days are about to get a lot longer, and the nights are about to get a whole lot shorter. I just hope the kids are ready for it.
Throughout summer vacation, my daughters had the luxury they could sleep in. I’m not really sure how late they slept each day, since I still had to go to work every morning. I can only count a handful of times any of them even seemed remotely awake before I left for the office.
They’re going to get a rude awakening, literally, this week when the alarms go off for the first day of school.
There’s no more “sleep until you’re ready to wake up” in their lives. No, now they’re back to scheduled time. Every minute they stay up later is one minute less of sleep. When it’s time to get up, they’ll have to get up, lest they miss the bus and all the trauma that comes with that.
I think it’ll be good to get them back on normal nights of sleep, instead of snoozing at the all-you-can-sleep buffet. When you start your summer as a child, you have all these optimistic beliefs about everything you will do. The reality is you spend more time in your own bed than anywhere else over the course of a day. Sometimes my kids spend so much time I wonder if it’s become their final resting place.
Parents probably get a little too much glee out of enforcing these revised sleeping hours.
I’ll admit I’m a little jealous of their sleep schedules. Maybe it’s just because I miss working second shift, when I seldom needed an alarm clock, but every time I hear that buzzer in the morning, I look at it with disgust.
Maybe it’s because they always look so peaceful sleeping while I stumble through my morning routine, hoping to catch a wave of inspiration so I can finally start getting things done.
Mostly, it’s just another bit of adulthood that doesn’t seem fair. What have they done to deserve an unlimited supply of sleep? I remember thinking I could do anything I wanted whenever I wanted once I was an adult. Ah, to be that naive again.
So now it’s back to school time, where the kids return to their regular schedule of bus rides, catching up with friends and, oh yeah, learning something to make them a productive member of society some day.
I’m sure my daughters will be telling me all week how tired they are after a long day of school. It seems a proper comeuppance, after those three long months of being tired of wondering exactly how they’ve filled their days and wasted their nights.
David Trinko is managing editor of The Lima News. Reach him at 567-242-0467 or on Twitter @Lima_Trinko.