I have something to admit to you, and I know it's going to sound nuts.
(Aren't we all used to that by now?)
I am afraid of naps.
There. I said it.
It started a few years ago, when a friend of a friend, someone I knew and liked, stayed home to take a nap while her husband and son went out to get something to eat. She was so exhausted she just didn't want to go along, and then... she died in her sleep.

It happened to another friend's wife a few years later, and yes, she had a heart condition, but it still freaked me out. I quit taking naps, fearing that if I was so tired that I couldn't keep my eyes open in the middle of the day, I was probably going to die in my sleep. Irrational? Obviously. But how do you deal logically with irrational thinking, even in a usually-rational person? I kind of think you don't bother trying.

I've been somewhat sleep-deprived for years now, between kids and menopause, and work, and the stresses of Life In General, and now camp hosting is taking a whole new toll. I try to be the Camp Mom who stays up late and shushes people after 10 PM. Ranger Rick has to be up at 5:30 to go to work, so it seems only fair that I would take on the late shift. Things are usually pretty quiet at 10:00, mostly because people who are going to drink too much and get loud are just getting started about then. There are nights like last night that will seem calm enough to take a shower, and get into my jammies, hoping to crawl into the Nest and get a little reading done before nodding off. But being Friday night and all, it's pretty naive to think I can call it a night so early. And sure enough, stepping out of the shower, and straining to hear above the AC fan, I heard the beginnings of the "WooHoos"...

Beer Pong, in my limited experience, only tends to escalate the noise level of any given group of people. The "kids" in 13 and 14 were gathered to see a friend off to a stint in the Navy, and several of them were firefighters for the forest service, who had to stay within range of their own home port. It was hard to get grumpy with them. They were doing some good things in the world. But the third time I had to go out and ask them to Please be quiet because it's after Quiet Hour and I'm really tired, I had to play the "Next time I have to come out there I'll call the Sheriff" card. I hate that. I never want to do it, but somehow, like with God and my kids and even Rick, nobody hears me until I become a raving bitch. Gah! It's so frustrating!

I got about 3 hours of sleep last night, and as a result, got very little done today. I'm not 20. I don't bounce back the way I once did. I got a little bit of computer work done, mumbled to myself a lot, made lunch for Rick, and then stuck a note on the trailer door: "Please Do Not Disturb... Siesta Time."

It worked. I slept for an hour and a half while the AC hummed along, drowning out all outside noise. The dogs slept too, and Rick worked and made a special effort to not come home for a drink of water. They have water in the office. This is a somewhat civilized place. And the best part of all... I woke up. I did not die in my sleep. The spell is broken. If I'm so tired in the middle of the day that all I can think about is sleep, well then, hello... the only appropriate response is to take a nap! I get it. I am so relieved. Refreshed, even.

It's Saturday night, the "worst" night of the week here in camp. People are still streaming in after 9:00, looking for sites and setting up in the almost-darkness. Some of them will just go to bed, like good campers. And probably someone will break out the red plastic beer cups and ping pong balls. I'm ready for them. Go ahead. Keep me up half the night. I have an eye mask that blocks out all the afternoon rays, and I'm to afraid to use it.

I'm also not afraid to call the Sheriff.


  1. Ah yes, testosterone, adreneline and booze - quite a cocktail. Ask anybody in the central valley of California. Really nuts in the summer - just like a giant campground. Would someone please direct met to info about how/why males must shout even when they are within 6 inches of each other - all night long in their swimming pools. Children have the good sense to collapse in exhaustion. There are days I fall asleep sitting in a chair. So, yes, you have my sympathy and empathy. Norine

  2. Empathy abounds for you from the Pacific Northwest Kim. I was camp mom for 4 years in Sequim. I was host and manager of an 120 site RV Park 10 acres for tenters. We had 25 long term spots and the rest was for the tourist trade. Part of me loved seeing the park full with camp fires burning in all directions but the drinking was horrid. Also winters were a bugger. People just can't seem to take responsibility for themselves or be considerate for their fellow man.

    Glad to hear that you have now conquered your fear of naps. Sleep depravation is not a good thing. Your brain starts tilting and can cause lots of other health conditions.

    Enjoy your time off and try to relax.

    Love & Light, Illaya

  3. That is a fascinating subject to write about - fear of napping during the day. Clever. Glad you have had a break through. And hey, if you don't wake up from a nap one day, just think how good it will probably be feeling to get that bit of rest and relaxation and have that be your last experience on earth. Hope that isn't too morbid!


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