As a kid, I tried to stay up as late as possible. My delaying tactics ranged from “just one more chapter” to “I’m thirsty”. And because I shared a bedroom with my older brother until I was nine, I’d try to stay awake until he came to bed so we could share our days hour by hour.
As a teenager and a young adult, sleep wasn’t a problem. I went to bed, I slept, I got up. As new parents, we slept when we could, and in middle age we slept when we wanted to.
But now that we are older, sleep has become an issue. The first two words Peter and I exchange in the morning are “Good morning.” The next three “How’d you sleep?”
It’s unpredictable. Sometimes I can’t fall asleep. Sometimes I wake in the middle of the night and get up and read because I can’t fall back to sleep. Sometimes I wake early. But then there are the nights that I sleep like the proverbial baby.
In my list of the plusses and minuses of growing old, sleep goes in the “not-so-good” column.