Wednesday, 24. December 2014 22:29 | Author:admin
It's finally that time. Decorations are done. Things are wrapped. Baking and pre-cooking is finished. The only thing left is waiting to see if the promised Amazon delivery arrives on time. Later there will be Mass, a quiet dinner and trying to figure out where I put Baby Jesus when I set up the rest of the Nativity set.
I like to end this now yearly tradition with my own Christmas wish for anyone who reads this (heck, it's Chritsmas, I'll wish it for those who read it or not). Last year I wished that we might listen to the angel's word and not be afraid. This year I turn again to a hymn pray that all will sleep in heavenly peace. I hope that you, that we, will get significantly more and better sleep in the coming year ahead.
Never has there been a more sleep deprived people than modern human beings. Whether it is for work or pleasure, or some combination of both, we stay up very late and get up ungodly early. Even in casual banter, if one is to go a step further from “fine, how are you?” We usually jump to “tired.” This suggests that not only is this condition acceptable for all, it is more or less expected. Would anyone in casual conversation reveal that she or he had an embarrassing medical condition? What's more, a person who talks of regularly gets enough sleep, may be looked at with suspicion, “You get enough sleep? What are you lazy?”
This is also an area where technology has few, if any benefits, and contributes greatly to the problem. Our smart phones encourage an “always on” mentality, as often we read things well outside of the work day that disturb (or cancel) sleep. I sleep with my iPad close at hand so I can read if I wake up in the night, so I know I'm part of the problem. We still are learning how to disconnect in any meaningful way.
I suppose I chose the worst time of the year to encourage extra sleep. My wife and I were reminiscing about when we both worked as church musicians when our daughter was young, and Christmas meant Midnight mass at separate churches, followed by doing last minute details at home, followed by early rising to have a few family moments before tearing out for the daytime masses. Those with small children are absolved from this wish.
But let's hope that even they (and all of us) may find a few extra hours for uninterrupted and guilt-free sleep. If you are lucky enough to have Friday off, let's make it a national sleep in day. No matter, I will, and I hope you will too make it a resolution for the next year to treat yourself to more sleep. Sleep in heavenly peace.