Sunlight streaming through the window, as you’re stretched out on the couch. Blanket draped haphazardly around your knees, barely covering both feet, but the streaming sunlight and heater humming creates the perfect cozy warmth. There’s the dog chewing quirky on a bone on the floor, maybe piercing the silence with a sharp bark or two when the mailman drives by, but mostly it’s peaceful, quiet, afternoon lull. One forearm is draped over our eyes as we drift through dreams and stirrings.
Or there’s the blackout shade drawn tight to block the streaming sunlight. If it’s “five o clock somewhere” then it’s “bedtime somewhere” is a perfectly acceptable phrase for the overly tired. Maybe we’ll change into our jammies or sweats even if it’s only 2pm because we know we’ll wake for dinner, but maybe won’t have the strength to do much else besides nuke some leftovers. If the kiddo is drippy nosed, we’ll possibly snuggle in together for a three hour nap and wake in time to watch some cartoons and go back to bed for the night.
There’s something magical about naps that doesn’t happen in my all-night sleep. I’m rarely aware of the time, and float dreamily in and out of consciousness. The dog may bark, but I’m less inclined to yell about it, and the phone may ring and I may or may not answer. Even when I’m crunched for time, a nap feels delicious, where crunched for time in the evening makes me feel panicky and wasteful of the 6, 7, or 8 hours that my timer says are left before my alarm gets me up for the next day’s activities.
Potamus and I have been taking a lot of naps together lately. There was the barfing incident last week, and then my Friday off, where we hunkered down in the dark bedroom and slept like the dead. I haven’t woken up so refreshed in a long time. But the magic of naps is quickly used up, like the spare change you find in the couch. It’s Monday morning and no matter how many naps I took this weekend it didn’t make me less tired this morning as I drove to work. It’s difficult, the anxiety prodding me awake at all hours of the night. My bladder prodding me awake at all hours of the night. My son’s grabby little hands prodding me awake at all hours of the night. Nap-time restfulness never quite fills me up for long enough.
But those beautiful moments, when we’re sweaty and rosy cheeked after a long slumber. When we yawn and crawl out of bed to more giggles and Hotwheels cars racing down the hallway…those moments are the ones I try to hang on to. When I’m gasping for my morning cup of coffee and it’s not even 8:00 am, I try to remember the luxury I felt this weekend when I got to take the elusive mother-nap.