Confessions from my napping diary

This post was written by Megan on June 6, 2010
Posted Under: burnout and sleep

Napping cartoon with diary

To some, napping during the day may seem like a luxury. Not for me. Napping is a core survival tool. It's more important than email and my iphone. Quite a claim, I know. But there you have it. 

Napping has always been vital for petit moi, even before the chronic fatiguey burnout thing… 


A false start?

Kindergarten was fine. Naps were always taken post-lunch. Soothing nap music was selected, nap mats were neatly distributed across the floor (with pillow and blanket, if desired). Kindy teachers really know how to live. 


Primary torture

Primary school came as a shock, however. The soothing music screeched to a halt. The nap mat was ripped out from under us. After lunch, it was announced, we were to stay awake. No excuses. By 2.30pm, I was ready to tear my eye-balls out from their sockets. 


High School in Alcatraz

The agony continued into high school. I tried to sneak into an empty class room, curl up with some maps of the world, but was always clapped out by some sadistic, tartan-clad teacher with poorly designed spectacles (with compassion, the staff room didn't have a nap area either).


University was heaven. No nap mats or soothing music, but finally I had a modus operandi. The red-bricked university library sat in the middle of campus, a silent oasis amongst the hubbub. With it's huge expanse and multiple levels, this sombre situ housed all manner of napping possibilities. The library staff went berko if you wanted a chat with a fellow student. But if you wanted to catch forty winks? Not a problem.

And it was in the library where I found my comrades, other nappers in quiet hiding. We would know each other, but never speak. Instead we slept like babies.

Then eventually, when ready, we'd rouse ourselves and stagger out – hopefully without souvenirs of the sandman or a snail trail of dried saliva down our chins. For the first half hour (post-nap) we may have looked a little stoned. But so did everyone else.


Axis of evil: the workplace

After graduation came the workplace. The ultimate death trap for the napper. My campaigns for siesta rooms were never taken seriously. And I never had the kind of desk that one could curl up under without being noticed.

Note: open-plan offices should be outlawed. 

On the rare occasion, when it all become too much, I'd drive to work and spend my rent money on car parking. At these times I'd mumble 'going out – back soon' and escape to my old Honda sedan where a blanket and pillow would be waiting.

Miraculously, some irritating colleage would track me down to ask an 'urgent'  question. I'd gaze up through the window, bleary-eyed and confused. Eventually it would become clear I had been foiled again. With a hand print still noticeable across my cheek, I would start whimpering like an ageing beagle.

Once circulation had returned to my face, it was time to wander back into the office. The other staff would snigger at me and the boss would look deeply unimpressed before turning away in disgust.

I performed better than most of my colleagues, but was shamed for having a different natural biorhythm. It was out. I was a napper.


Where is the justice?

One must create one's own justice in The Land of Awake-All-Day people. Nappers are still a minority it seems. Or are the majority of folk out there in denial of their nap natures?

After decades of torture, I defected. I was forced to create my own society with a napping population of 2 (I have a cat).  Being a freelance writer means I can easily work from home. Oh, the joy.

This workplace where I live and love is also where I also nap. Whenever I want, wherever I want. And, yes, the iphone and email can wait. 


Take my Nap Around the World Tour

This post was written by Megan Hills. Megan is a writer and cartoonist who naps with pride. Find out more about Megan

Reader Comments

I am proud to say that even without burnout I nap most days.
I work till 8ish most nights and the 20 minute kip in the afternoon just sets me up for the evening.
It is ideal just to get some breathing space in this crazy paced life most of us live and a nap is a great way to get it

Written By Jeff on June 7th, 2010 @ 2:04 pm

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