The Weston A. Price Way

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Naps For America

Today, the sun is actually shining and it's supposed to be around sixty degrees by afternoon. I hope so. We had a rough start to the week and I'm hoping the week becomes like the month of March is supposed to be..."in like a lion, out like a lamb."

Yesterday, I was able to go to Parents' Day at my granddaughter's ballet school. She's the youngest child in the youngest group of children. All the other girls had on their little net tutus, but not our little whirlwind. Seems she played with her ballet bag and removed the tutu while at her home, but having had to dress at my home, she was without.

No matter. The room was full of dainty pink tinkerbells and our tink was yet the prettiest little belle out there, of course. It was a delightful half-hour. Classical music was used for the whole of their performance...or, her performance, since our little fairy was the only one we really saw.

My most favorite part was when her instructor had them all standing in a line, facing us. They were supposed to stand tall and at the teacher's cue, gracefully raise and lower their arms. Our graceful lass bent over from the waist, eyes to the floor as if studying an invisible bug. From this position, each time the teacher said 'arms up!", she lifted her arms. (Obedient...sort of.) Everytime she said, "Arms down!", our girl's arms dropped. Loosely dropped. More like, plopped...and then swung lazily, awaiting the next cue to painstakingly rise again. All this as her upside-down ponytail swept the floor.

At one point, she lifted her head and looked at her mom who happened to be sitting right in front of her. Mom motioned her to stand up straight, and whispered, "What's this bending over stuff about?"

Our little sweetie replied, "I'm ti-wed."

Well, then! That I can understand. 'Ti-wed' is common ground.

Sleep is the best counter for tiredness, though a Red Bull can stall the need for a while, but honestly, sleep is such a good thing. I wish more Americans would understand that.

I read recently, and it wasn't the first time I'd seen this, that naps help prolong a good percentage. I love naps. I don't get them like I used to, but I try to reserve Sunday afternoons for a bit of one, or a long one...whatever my body cries for.

Sleep rejuvinates the mind. Heals it, even. People having undergone extreme stress need sleep, as I'm sure you know. But the restoring effects of sleep are not meant for the extremes alone. Every one has problems and stresses and if sleep helps those with the larger ones, what might it do for those of us encountering 'mere' daily stresses? Sleep helps the mind sort out its troubles so it doesn't get confused and cause us to do really stupid things.

That's why all of America needs to be turned on to sleep. Especially anyone in leadership. We are living in a time when the stresses are the highest they've ever been for most people of our country.

I wonder if we could twist some arms, starting at the White House, into daily napping? Think about it...more rest means smarter decisions. Maybe there would be a little less of this attempt to force things that seem right at first glance, but in the long run, could be dangerous. (It's like when bacteria isn't first cleaned from the wound before the band-aid is applied.) But I suppose that's a conversation for another day, and maybe even not by one such as I.  The point is, in order for people to make good, healthy decisions, they need their sleep.

Much of the rest of the world has already figured this out. So many of them have siesta's. We don't want to do that. We're afraid, I guess, that they'll beat us to...something. We are not so great and so big that we can ignore our health. The old adage, 'If you ain't got your health, you ain't got nothin'" holds great, down-to-earth truth. To me, it would be so great if lawmakers would create one really great law...that we all have a daily rest time...or nap time. If they did, you know what I'd say?

"Naps? Oh, no! Please, please, don't make me!" while quickly heading toward my bedroom...before they changed their minds. 

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