Sleep is weird. We spend around a third of our lives doing it, and we are still learning what it does for us and why it is important. Sleep scientists theorize that learning, body repair, and brain maintenance all take place during sleep. There are some people who are short sleepers, those who are fine with less sleep, and those who are long sleepers who need more. Some people get their best sleep early in the evening while others stay up later. The amount of sleep a person needs varies by person, but most adults need between 7-9 hours every night. Most adults are also operating in a sleep debt that would take about two weeks of longer periods of sleep to correct.
The best way to get the sleep you need is routine. Human bodies love routine. BittyJack has a bedtime routine that takes at least 45 minutes, which seems like a long time until you consider that I’m including all of the things that cue him bedtime in immanent. He has a bath, brushes his teeth, puts on his pajamas and listens to at least four books about Elmo looking for a little lost puppy. (I spend a lot of time thinking about this puppy. Why doesn’t Elmo notice the puppy, who is literally in Elmo’s line of sight? Why doesn’t he want to be found? Is the puppy a metaphor for obsession? The series has ended and I don’t think that Elmo ever found the puppy, which is maddening to me. I know this is a children’s series, but still, things usually have definitive happy endings. Is the “Where’s the Puppy Series” meant to teach children how to work through unfulfilled desires? Is it a marketing ploy. I have so many questions.) Jack goes to sleep without (much of a) fuss most nights, for which I am grateful. My routine follows BittyJack’s, which is a routine I impose on him, thus making it a beautiful circle of healthy predictability.