Morning people are so annoying. So judgmental. They think just because they like waking up at the crack of dawn, that everyone should, and that those poor schlops who don’t are just plain lazy.
Morning people’s greatest joy in life is to phone their non-morning-people friends early just to rub in the fact that they are so superior for waking up early. You’d think that during all those dark hours that they’re awake before the sun, they could come up with a better hobby than belittling their sleeping friends.
Image from here.
I don’t know why, but for some reason when I get those kind of calls, I always feel compelled to act like I was wide awake, like it’s the most natural thing in the world for me to be awake and functioning before the sun even rises in the morning. But really, why should I be ashamed that I like to sleep in? They should be ashamed that they interrupted my sweet, sweet dreams.
But that’s not the kind of response morning people like to hear. They go out of their way to make The Others feel guilty for sleeping in. You know the type: the kind of morning person who tries to shame you into feeling guilty about your sleeping habits.
My mother-in-law does this to me at least once a week. She’ll call around 9:00 (I KNOW IT’S LATE, BUT DON’T YOU JUDGE ME—THERE WILL COME A TIME WHEN I WILL LOSE THIS GIFT OF WELL-RESTEDNESS, AND I DO NOT WANT ANY REGRETS ABOUT FAILING TO LIVE IT UP WHILE I STILL COULD; I REFUSE TO BE ASHAMED) and glibly sing, “Good mor-ning!”
Whenever my response sounds even mildly grouchy, she gets all excited, and immediately pounces on the possibility that I may have still been in bed:
“You’re not still sleeping are you?”
At this point, the conversation can go one of two ways: I can reach into the depths of my soul and procure the fakest of awake voices ever known to man and lie through my teeth: “No, I’ve been awake since five-thirty!” or I can stifle the inner swear words in my brain and grumble, “Yeah, what’s it to you?”
Ninety-nine percent of the time, I lie and act cheerful. She knows I’m lying, too, because I’m never that cheerful even when I really have been awake for hours, so any sort of chirping voice is highly unconvincing. Every time I lie, she sees right through my facade, and, satisfied that she has successfully shamed me about my sleeping habits, she giggles at her superiority for a moment before she gets to the point of whatever she is calling about.
One time I chose to take the honest route and just grumble that yes, I had still been in bed, as a matter of fact, and what could possibly be so important that she was calling at ten-thirty in the dadgum morning, she paused for a moment, baffled at my blatant lack of shame, and then decided that said shame must be produced at all costs, so she said, “That is pathetic! It’s time to get out of bed, Lazy!”
It worked. I was shamed.
Why is that? Why is it that morning people feel so superior to those of us reasonable individuals who don’t like being awake when it’s still dark outside? Why does every morning person I know feel the need to judge me for sleeping in? It’s not like I call them at one a.m. and squeal, “What? You’re not in bed already, are you? Get up, you lazy thing! The night is young!”
I would never do that.
What’s really infuriating is that a couple of days a week, I will call her house in the late afternoon, you know, when I’ve been awake for several hours and am really starting to get revved up for the day (around four o clock), and more often than not, such a phone call will will wake her up from a nap. I am always so tempted to gloat, to say, “Ha, ha! Who’s lazy now, huh?” or “That’s what you get for being stupid and waking up so early—if you would just sleep in a little later, you could actually be utilizing these precious daytime hours instead of wasting them away like a lump on a log,” but inevitably, without fail, she will make me feel guilty for waking her up! ARGH!
The ironic thing is that on the rare (very rare) days that I do feel compelled to rouse myself from bed early, say, at six in the morning, people have no faith that I have actually done such a thing. I always text Poor Kyle when I stay awake after he leaves for work, simply because I feel the need to prove to him my diligence. But he gets up at 6:00 and stays up on a daily basis, so he’s never impressed by my rare early mornings. One time, I had an appointment at 9:00 to run some errands with my morning-person neighbor and she called me at 8:45 to ask in a sing-song voice, “Good mor-ning! Are you awake yet?” I had been awake since six because I don’t like being late for appointments, so I flatly said, “Yes, of course. I’ve been awake for hours.” I tried not to be offended, but it didn’t work—who gave her the right to assume that I would be late for our appointment just because I like to sleep late?
Sleeping late doesn’t mean that I can’t manage my time well—it means that I manage my time a little later than some people manage theirs. I am fully capable of getting up early if necessary…I simply go to bed a little earlier the night before. It’s not the ideal way for me to live my life, but I certainly can do it.
The days of me feeling ashamed about my sleeping schedule are over. Starting now, anyone who calls me while I’m still in bed will be told the truth, plain and simple: Yes, you woke me up, but that’s okay because I don’t judge people for needing to make a phone call in the morning. No, you don’t have to hang up and call later because I’m already awake so you might as well get it over with; what can I do for you?
I don’t expect people to know what time I wake up every morning, because it varies from day to day; if I really didn’t want to answer the phone, I’d just sleep through it. But if I have the decency to pick up the phone at seven in the morning, all I ask is that they have the decency not to judge me for sounding a little croaky and incoherent.
So, confess: have you had to deal with this sort of problem? Or are you a morning person, and see my argument from the other side of the spectrum?