Fun fact about me: If you ask me a question when I’m asleep, I will answer you. If I fall asleep during a Pixar movie, I will continue to quote along, REM cycle be damned. If I am tired, the nearest flat (or semi-flat) surface will suffice for a nap. I have napped in cars, on the floor of a major university’s business school, completely upright in every vehicle you could imagine (except a boat–I’ve never napped on a boat) and during a movie about talking chihuahuas. In other words, I am a champion napper. Every time a study comes out declaring that napping is good for your overall health and well-being, I cheer, and then ignore the subsequent studies that tell me napping is bad and you should not do it. For me, anywhere can be a bed, and any outfit is pajamas. So I was delighted when I was putting together my 2015 calendar and discovered that today, January 3, is the Festival of Sleep.
A little backstory–I give each year a name, like I’m my own personal United Nations assembly (2015 is the International Year of Light and the International Year of Soil, by the way). 2014 was the Year of Kindness and now, 2015 is Hannah’s Year of Celebration. I love holidays and there are so many more than the ten or so that actually turn up on the calendar! What about International Left Hander’s Day (August 13) or International Museum Day (May 18) or Leslie Knope’s own Galentine’s Day (February 13)? So many holidays that make each day worthy of celebration. As Indian mystic Osho said, “Life should not only be lived, it should be celebrated!” 2014 was a wonderful, but often challenging year, so this year, I want to make sure I take the time to celebrate whenever I possibly can. Celebration brings so much joy into life and everyone (myself included) could use more joy. One of my favorite authors, Anne Lamott, believes that “joy is the best makeup” and I absolutely agree. So this year, I’m spreading joy.
Now, back to sleeping. Today, I celebrated the Festival of Sleep by sleeping in just a little longer than I wanted. Later, I will probably take a nap. But while I’m not exactly sure how this holiday came to be, I’m going to use it as a reminder to take care of myself, to give myself time to pause and renew myself. I love napping, especially on couches. If I ever stay at your house, and you apologize for the fact that I have to sleep on your couch, please don’t worry. Couch sleeping is one of my favorite things. Joey and Ross are completely with me on this, and while I don’t need a nap partner, most of my best naps have occurred on couches. My own couch is just my size, and the cushions squish perfectly and I have a couch quilt that’s just the right weight and oh gosh I want a nap right now. Because napping is just the greatest. Children under the age of five are completely with me on this.
This year, I’m celebrating. Oprah, the great and powerful and wise woman that she is, said “The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.” And if Oprah said it, I’m going with it., so today celebrate the good that is sleep and take a nap. Bonus points if it’s is on a couch.