I know many people love naps, but my devotion is extreme. I am intensely committed to the napper’s lifestyle. I have napped at least once every day since I arrived at Amherst, occasionally thrice. I have mastered the 20-minute power nap, the full sleep cycle 90 minute experience, and the luxurious three-hour lounge that leaves you wondering what day it is. I once napped so intensely I did not wake up when my roommate fell on top of me while trying to turn off my alarm. My friends understand the significance of naps in my life. A recent group-chat centered around when I would awake from my sleeping-beauty-like repose to get dinner. They would never dare wake me.
Every once in a while, I question whether my devotion to naps is healthy. Couldn’t this time be better spent ingesting one of my many long and arduous readings? Couldn’t I make a dent in one of my three upcoming papers? Shouldn’t I be able to get through a 50 minute class without 90 minute naps before and after? With the onset of fall I’ve started napping longer. Aren’t I missing out on the joy of watching the leaves change and disdainfully observing people order pumpkin-spice products? It’s important to question all of our deeply-held beliefs. I do so every day. But I always return to the cat-nap faith.
“Why?” one may ask, “It appears you value napping above all else. That’s pretty sad.” Such criticism exposes the ignorance of someone who does not understand the glory of a good nap. A brief respite from the trials of the day renders me an infinitely better person. I awake with the disposition of a gentle puppy. I am suddenly kind and caring. I want to hug people and listen to their troubles. I become freshly motivated and ready to work. Boring readings are suddenly intriguing, and the promise of future naps propels me through the worst papers. I rarely remember my dreams from the night, but my daytime repose provides me with infinite entertainment. I don’t need to watch Mindy Kaling’s on-screen trials and tribulations, when in 20 minutes of napping my life becomes an interesting adventure. I climb mountains, I win game-shows, I actually get with people!
I know some might see this as a lazy-person’s approach to life. And I am pretty darn lazy. But maybe we’d all be better off if we took some time from the day to rest, rejuvenate, and—I’d argue—become better people. Since my napping has progressed from casual to committed, I spend less time mindlessly scrolling through YikYak and scanning my Facebook profile to make sure I appear sufficiently interesting. I haven’t re-watched quite so many episodes of Gossip Girl. My sleep schedule has taken up a bit of my “guilty pleasure” time, helping me to dream rather than engage in mindless activities. And why not make the best of every free moment? I’m only midway through my first semester and I already feel the strain of an Amherst workload. If I don’t get enough sleep, I get a little crazy. I start laughing when nothing funny happens, fall asleep in the middle of class, or cry tears of joy over the existence of mac and cheese. My naps may seem excessive, but I believe they’re necessary. I think they make me a slightly less terrible person. And they may help you. Let’s all just take a nap. It’s worth it.
(Photo courtesy of Aflutter)