I’m starting to realize that the hours in which I should be off in a deep sleep are the hours where I continually find my mind wandering into thoughts and places where all I want, is to be awake. Sleep begins feeling so distant and so irrelevant, even with an 8:00 AM breakfast date, a 9:15 AM exam, a full day of classes, countless interactions, participation, brain stimulation, and a grilled cheese comin’ up, for the two kids that brighten my week, if even for a few hours and dollars at a time.
If it’s one thing I have subconsciously memorized from my college studies, it’s the list of predefined instruction on how to succeed, in our faith, in the classroom, among our friends and for ourselves. It’s the many bulletin board presentations and dining hall posters, that are supposed to teach us that central to our studies, we are to hit the gym daily, drink water, never procrastinate and get a good nights sleep, or else.
Or else…what? All the last minute information we acquire, all the Netflix episodes we start after midnight, and all the distractions we tend to, will turn us into an unintelligent, unhappy, unhealthy, monster of a college student? I disagree. I personally think, bed head is an entirely worse way to start off my morning, than to yawn a few too many times from spending a few too many hours doing, well, something for myself, simply because I wanted to and because I could.
I have never considered myself an introvert. Ever. It wasn’t until my busy year took off that I realized my firm belief behind the motto, “Treat yoself!” One of my best friends often says this to me, when I often find myself nervous to throw down a couple dollars on a sugar-filled coffee drink or ugly sweater from the thrift store, just because I am taught to have a budget, stick to that budget, and wait to buy a coffee drink until I have a full-time job and finally, deserve it. But, sometimes I gave in, and sometimes I didn’t, but nonetheless her motto became my motto, and just like that I began feeling that doing a few things for myself, is not selfish at all. It’s one thing if a Grande spiced cinnamon-dolce low-fat latte with extra whip is the only thing to get you through a day, BUT I think a good amount of something for yourself is okay.
We all have our guilty pleasures at Starbucks, in the vending machines, on our secret Spotify playlists (is that just me?) and on our social media. Buying yourself something isn’t in any way the same as staying up too late for non-educational reasons, and neither of them are the key to eternal happiness and bliss, but ultimately it leads back to ourselves, in a way that I deem to be unselfish and quite honestly, vital to our sanity. I think that some form of introversion is in fact, a necessity. At least for me.
I used to feel pathetic and rude for not answering the door when people knocked or when I spent 4 hours teaching myself the basics of guitar instead of socializing at dinner. Except, now I see, that the hours I spent, (and still do often spend) alone, somewhere, doing whatever it is my mind at the time wants to focus on, are in ways, more important to me than a good night’s sleep before an exam, that quite honestly, I know I will do no better on by following the world’s guide lines for being the best student (and person) I can be. Sorry professors and the greater society…but no one else has the right to guide us down the lines (probably doodled during a boring class lecture and yes, we all do it) that we have not created for ourselves. (Need I even say, that God is obviously the exception to this statement?)
Here is my current life status: I am exhausted. It is far past midnight. I am eating a brownie in bed. I plan on binge-watching something on Netflix sometime this week and maybe browsing my insanely fashionable, comedic and ridiculous Tumblr blog feed…because stupid as it sounds, I know myself a bit more every time I allow myself to breathe, while the tea water boils and I surf the web. I am not saying that it is the healthiest of a lifestyle to eat junk food and watch TV all day, however, I say, power to the night owl’s and power to the early birds. I refuse to wait until I am thirty and thriving to enjoy life’s little pleasures, and I refuse to go to bed before midnight, most of the time. Sometimes, I surprise myself with the things I learn and the passions that grow in me, just from an article on Buzz Feed or a song I forgot I loved, or even a perfectly baked brownie in bed.
Life is so, so, joyous, and how on earth are we expected to do all of these “more” important things, when we don’t offer ourselves enough time for laughing out loud, alone, or getting inspiration through Pinterest DIY accounts? I see importance, in all of it. Yes, I studied for hours for my morning exam, and yes I will be tired in the morning because I “should” be sleeping, but life is full of treats and they are not to be wasted. I might even eat another brownie, and yes it will be in bed. Because, why not?
God knows, we all have a circumstance, a stress, or a test in the morning that will drain us, and disappoint us, and push us away from believing in our own self-worth, and it is absolutely pathetic to never give ourselves a break, because cliché as it sounds, we are only human. We are more than deserving of some well-spent time for ourselves and we are more than capable of interpreting what “well-spent” means to us.
Maybe you’re a salty snack kind of person, who prefers a 90’s sitcom, or maybe you are jealous of my brownie and prefer to write a journal entry, or maybe you really do just want to sleep. None of it is better spent than another in my book and I refuse to lose sight of just how important, life, and its many “treat yoself!” moments, are.