Here's how I know I've been sleep-deprived: When I woke up this morning and looked at the clock, it said 8:45. I'd forgotten to set the alarm, and slept straight through my regular wake-up time, not to mention the time when I'm supposed to be on duty and answering the phone in my inimitable professional manner. ("Uh, hello? Do you know what time it is!?!")
The first thing I did when I sprang out of bed was check the answering machine. No calls missed. Whew. I turned on the phone and the computer, and then I went back to bed, because I was a little dizzy from jumping around like that. When I was ready to get up for real, it was 9:00.
Except it wasn't. I checked the other clocks as I walked through the house, and they all said 8:40. The clock radio by my bed was twenty minutes fast, and I wonder how long it's been that way. Have I been getting up twenty minutes too early all week? Or longer? Is that why I'm more tired than I think I should be?
This isn't the first time this has happened, and every time I have this unforeseen break in routine, I wonder why I can't do it every day. If only I could wake up and face the world on my own schedule, instead of being at the mercy of the demands of business obligations, I'd have more good days than bad. (Or at least more good days than I have now.)
After a brief power outage this afternoon, I went ahead and set all the clocks to the correct time. (I even set the alarm for 7:30.) I'll deal with my sleep disorders some way that makes more sense than shirking my duties for an hour every morning.
Besides, an hour would never be enough. It would turn into two, then three, and soon I'd be staying up all night and sleeping all day (which, by the way, is what my body would like to do, if it were in charge of scheduling).