Last week during a school break, we had a family get together which kept us up till dawn. As a result, my kids slept until 2:30 pm and....SO DID I!!! And then it hit me, I can sleep! The problem has been all along WHEN I'm sleeping. My circadian rhythms are all off causing me to feel sleepy between 8am-5 pm, times when I have to force myself to be awake and take care of my kids and home. I'm not exactly sure how they got that way considering I never slept at those times to establish a weirdo pattern like that. That's more typical of....
hold the phone- those are Saudi summer/Ramadan sleeping hours!
Yes siree Bob! This country has once again managed to screw up my sleep! Even though my kids are sleeping at night, just BEING in this country apparently is enough to mess up my sleep. So having discovered the source of my misery I'm left with a choice:
A) go ahead and give in to my screwy sleep patterns, turning myself and kids into nocturnal creatures, completely worthless/unconscious during daylight hours? I'd finally fit in with my in-laws schedule but this type of schedule has many drawbacks in my past experience.
- I end up being late/missing several prayers such as Thuhr and 'Asr in order to get enough hours of uninterrupted sleep.
- Sleeping during the day has never been refreshing and I wake up feeling zonked and unmotivated despite filling my necessary sleeping quota.
- If I sleep during the day, my kids have to come along for the ride because they're still young and I must be awake when they are. My kids behaviour becomes ridiculously bad when turned around (remember, I've followed this type of schedule off and on for several years because of living in my in-laws house).
B) wait until school lets out at the end of May when I no longer have to worry about school hours and try to adjust my sleeping schedule a little every day/week until it corresponds with normal human hours, not Saudi hours. I wouldn't be able to do it before then because I'd always have to worry about waking up to get my kids ready for school and to open the door for them and take care of them once they get home. Although this sounds logical, this also has its drawbacks.
- MAY!!! I'm tired and want sleep NOW!
- I'll be managing to fix my sleep the exact time that the rest of the country will be switching to night mode and I'll once again be out of sync with everyone and everything else here.
I'll be honest, I'm leaning towards option B and I'll just try to fit in as many "naps" as I can till then. The times that I've had to sleep "Saudi" hours during the daytime have been some of the worst in my life. I've never felt so lethargic, depressed, and out of tune as those seemingly endless summers at my in-laws house when I prayed for school to start again just to be able to resume a normal schedule of night sleeping. Even if I slept for 12 hours, I never felt refreshed.
After trying EVERY herbal/natural remedy known, trying proven behavioral modifications and even calling Peaceful Muslimah in Qatar and Nzingha who goes to Bahrain to see what sleep medicines are available there, I'd be ready to pay someone to hit me over the head with a sledge-hammer if it were guaranteed I'd have a good nights sleep. There are no sleeping pills available here in the country so these are my only options.