Once upon a time there lived a young couple who had a dilemma: their baby wouldn’t go to sleep. Both parents paced the living room floor with her for hours, bouncing her little body up and down with the hope of soothing her colic.
It worked as long as they didn’t stop walking or bouncing.
When the baby was a little older, she fought sleep when they placed her in her crib. The father eventually learned an interesting trick. If he could keep all of her limbs still for a few minutes, she’d fall asleep in moments. He began gently touching her arms and legs every time she lifted them up. She must have liked it. She fell asleep every time he played the keep your body still game with her.
As you probably already guessed, I was that baby. My internal clock can be fussy at the best of times.
Case in point: the last week or two. Falling asleep wasn’t an issue. Neither was staying asleep.
Come 5 a.m., though, my body was wide awake every day.
It didn’t matter that I’d stayed up until 11 the night before or that I hadn’t had any caffeine in ages. I wasn’t anxious, sick, or in pain. My body just would not let me sleep once it detected the slightest whiff of daybreak.
Frustrating? Yes. I’m definitely a morning person, but usually that means I’m wide awake an hour or two later in the day.
Finally I decided to work with it instead of against it. Last night I went to bed much earlier than I have been lately. My body still woke me up at a little after 5, but this time I was well-rested.
Tell me about your internal clocks. Can they be reset? Have you ever had an issue with yours not working the way you hoped it would?