Oh, the hardships I endure before 7 a.m.

***This post is published in conjunction with the Spin Cycle over at Sprite’s Keeper. Today’s subject is “confessions.” Click here to read more of the internet’s most confessional posts.***

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?

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at facebook.com/archivesofourlives, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
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29 Responses to Oh, the hardships I endure before 7 a.m.

  1. Maureen says:

    I used to be somewhat of a morning person. Then I got a job and had to keep up with my coworkers who arrive at work sometime between 6:30 and 7:30. Because they’re old. And let’s face it, old people like to get up early. I’d love to show up at 9 every morning but if I did that, I would most definitely feel the late guilt.
    My weekend sleep schedule is the weirdest though because Matt gets off work and comes over at 6 am. One of his favorite morning after work activities is to clean my refrigerator (“what kind of science experiment are you growing in here today?”) while I pretend to pay attention as I fall back to sleep on the couch.

  2. jacque says:

    i’ve never been a morning person but now that i have kids i am kinda forced to be so i fully support sleeping in as much as possible!!

  3. Jordan says:

    ooo, what a good post! I see both sides of the story. I consider myself a morning person, because I can wake up early and be in a great mood, no matter the time. I prefer to go to bed on the early side and wake up early- it’s the most productive way for me. As a grad student, early means to bed at 11pm and awake at 7am on weekdays. My mother in law on the other hand goes to bed at like 9pm, and wakes up at 5:30. So to her, I sleep late. Especially on weekends when I often sleep until 9:30. She always “waits” to call us until 10am. My other grad school friends? I wouldn’t dare call them before 11:30 on weekends! But I do have to say, I am a judger of non-morning people. I always feel like saying “suck it up! Join the real world!” I have a friend who operates on the opposite schedule of me- she rather wake up around noon and go to bed at 4am. As a grad student, you can get away with that life style- but I still think of her as lazy. ;)

  4. Spencer says:

    Not a morning person. Never have been. When I’ve been forced to be such, it has never been with cheer and that includes my mission. If I were you, I would hang up on my mother-in-law the moment lazy escaped her lips. Remember, “early to bed and early to rise makes a (wo)man healthy, wealthy and wise, but early to rise and early to bed keeps a (wo)man healthy, but socially dead.” Viva la noche!

  5. Shesten says:

    I never fake my early morning voice. I frequently get calls from my friends at 9 or 10 when I’m still sleeping, and they are always like, “Oh crap! Did I wake you up?” And I’m always like, “Yeah. But it’s okay. I should probably get out of bed anyway.” ‘Cause even though I was up ’til 4, I’ll stay up ’til 5 if I don’t get outta bed soon. Plus, I do my best work between midnight and 2am.

    So I’m with ya there… If I didn’t want to talk to you, I’d see that it was your name on the caller id and I wouldn’t answer the phone. I have no qualms about ignoring your call until I’m lucid enough to banter with you.

    Oh, and if you think I’m lazy, no big deal. Think what you want. ‘Cause if you think I’m lazy, I guess you just don’t know me :o)

  6. Enjoy sleeping in while you can, once you have children they totally KILL that luxury. Tell your MIL that you are not lazy you are just resting up for when you have kids : ) Or say can I call you back in a bit? What time do you take your nap? I don’t want to wake YOU up : )

  7. whitney says:

    Sleep until whenever you want. take the phone off the hook. Savor every sleeping moment.Cause seriously…between 6 and 7 every morning has been my friend for the last year. It is the worst.

  8. Lisa says:

    I love to sleep. Even though I am forced to wake up early I am definitely NOT a morning person. It takes me a while before I am fully functioning so I reallllly do not appreciate people who are super chipper and expect me to feel the same (ahem, my husband). So I agree with you on this post, except for answering the phone when you are sleeping: don’t do it. You can always tell the person later that you were wide awake and “busy” at the time. Works like a charm :)

  9. I have become a morning person, but I used to be a night person. Very simple fix to your problem. Don’t answer the phone. :-)
    You’re linked and forgiven for your morning woes!

  10. Mama Badger says:

    (insert cringe) I’m a morning person. Little o and I get up around 5:15 every day (or we wouldn’t all get to work and school on time). I like my morning time with the wee one. Morning is my time. Nobody around to bother me, not a soul. But I have a hard and fast rule that I do not harass night people. And I never make a phone call before 9:am. If I know you’re not a morning person, I wait until noon, or send a text to call me when you’re up.

    I know I’m not at my finest after 9:pm. I don’t want people poking at me. I don’t poke the morning people. Seems fair to me. Sorry your MIL didn’t get the message.

  11. Niki says:

    I am so with you on this one. Evie is not a morning person. Some people would assume me
    to wake up early and get alot done around the house while she sleeps in…but then I’d be missing out on sweet cuddle time. And don’t they know that I stay up later than she does? How is it really logical to go to bed after her AND wake up before her? Let’s just say, 8 am on a week day is early for me…

  12. Chloe says:

    Okay, I’m definitely NOT a morning person. But MJ is. AND he wakes up at 6 o’clock in the morning, even on Saturdays! However, I LOVE sleep in. If I could, I would sleep until 11 am. And I would be the happiest person in the world. But MJ is always waking me up before that… you know, he tries at 6 am, then at 7:30, then at 8:15 and finally I’m completely awaken and in a bad mood for a couple of hours or the rest of the weekend! Argh.

  13. I think you might be my soulmate.

    And I think your mother-in-law is my mother’s soulmate.

  14. P.S. I WOKE UP AT NOON TODAY, SUCKAS. But, lest you think I’m lazy, I was up working until five a.m.

  15. dunno says:

    i don’t answer the phone when i’m asleep. i actually tell it not to ring. in so many keypresses and soundsqueeks.
    you’ve pegged lrnf right on the nose. totally something she would say, do.
    i’m not doing the afternoon nap yet, cuz i get home from work bout 3, but it will come. i’d like a decent siesta once in awhile. with an entertaining afternoon dream.

  16. Mike says:

    I like this post. I’m not a morning person at all. Which is why I love my school schedule this semester. I don’t have my first class till 10:45! Enough time to wake up and study if I need to on occasion, but most days Shirley gets up and goes to work and I can sleep for a bit longer. Sometimes I feel bad for her having to wake so early… but I love sleeping in.

  17. GRANMAMA says:

    All I can say is:
    The world has no need for the drone—SO—–
    “WAKE UP and do something more
    Than dream of you mansion above
    Doing good is a pleaure
    A joy beyond measure
    A s;essng of duty and love.”

  18. Kristen says:

    Ah, yes. I have this problem. I have this problem with my mother of all people. Even though I lived with her for a good eighteen years she always likes to call me before eleven. Now I might be awake, my eyes may be open, heck I might even be making somewhat comprehensible speech but I’m no good to anyone before eleven. The light are on, but no one’s home and I’m probably wishing I was still asleep. However, she still calls and still is always suprised that I was still asleep or I’m up and awake but not really happy about it all.

  19. chelsie says:

    Camille, i do not have to tell you that I am also a night person. I wager to bet that I am even worse off than you. . . For example today, I wanted to get out of bed by 9 (I had gone to bed at 2). So I set my phone alarm for 8am and my other alarm for 9am(just in case I didn’t wake up). It was 9:30 before I rolled over on my little knees to pray and now almost 10 I still have blurry sleepy vision and croaky sleepy voice…

    But I agree with you, when I have to be someplace early I will be there and I will be on time. I may not have my hair done or makeup on, but I will be on time.

  20. Kristin says:

    Camille!
    How could I not comment after this post?!
    I was just laughing picturing myself going “Hello?” In a cracking-trying-to-be-awake-but-SO-not-voice. Happens at least twice a week.
    My excuse? My 2 kids sleep in, so why wouldn’t I? I’m milking it for all it’s worth because the school years are coming…
    Great writing!

  21. Dutch girl says:

    Hate morning people!
    Love your post :)

  22. TeamHaynes says:

    So I have a rule. You haven’t known me long enough if you haven’t woken me up in the morning. I am the Queen of Sleeping in. I’m so serious. I have been know to sleep in until 2 or 3 in the afternoon. Of course this is on weekends or when I’m not working, but I feel your pain. Morning people are just odd in every way. The really scary morning people are the ones that need copious amounts of coffee in order to function properly. It’s like trying to have a conversation with a fiery dragon. Sorry Mr. Dragon, I didn’t realise you were so pissy at this hour. Luckily Hosehead is very understanding and let’s me sleep in all I want, when I can. Like this morning for example. He woke up two hours before I did but left me to sleep. I wouldn’t have gotten upset if he woke me, but it was a nice gesture to say the least.
    I actually take the other approach to the situation. My phone starts ringing, I make sure there is plenty of phlem in my throat when I answer….”mmmfph, he….llo?” “Oh, did I wake you?” “Uhhh, yeah.” (Big yawn) Doing this always ensures the next sentence, “Oh no! I’m so sorry!” Uh huh, they should feel bad! It’s the bloody morning! I have no need to wake up other than a fire…I’m still in bed people.

    I’m glad you’re not a morning person.

  23. Alicia says:

    I have always hated mornings and try to avoid them any time I can. The way I see it, we are all the same. At 10:30 pm when all those morning people are lazily sleeping in their beds, we’re cleaning, typing, watching movies, and doing all sorts of things. Those lazy morning people aren’t doing a thing! Then we sleep while they get up and ignore a perfect snooze button moment. I honestly think if you calculated the awake hours, it’d be about the same amount. Maybe even the night owls would win. :)

  24. RatalieNose says:

    So I”m definately like you.
    Most teenagers are. But it seems this doesn’t hit till high school. But I was weird and it started in Jr. High. But all my friends were still morning people. So they would call me on Saturday mornings wanting to make plans for the day and the only thoughts on my mind were trying to remember which boy I’d been kissing in my dream! But now, the stresses of high school have turned them to the dark (or light) side of late-rising. I guess it just depends on your perspective.

  25. anna says:

    I can be a morning person or a night person, but not both. People often marvel at how I’m able to be up so late at night working and I am honest and let them know it’s b/c I usually sleep until 7:30 or 8:00am every day. Clara doesn’t wake up before that and if I don’t have a good reason to, I don’t either! Oh, and one of the partners I used to work with would ask me every single time he called: Did I wake you up? Even if it was two in the afternoon and I had been at work since before sunrise. It just turned me into a smart alec though so if he called to ask what I was doing I’d say I was taking a nap.

  26. tracey says:

    I say sleep late as long as you can! I’m not a morning person either, but my 3 little ones make it impossible to sleep in…unfortunately they are early risers!

    :) T

  27. Anonymous says:

    I am so calling you tomorrow morning at 6:30 a.m. when I wake up to go for my 5 mile morning jog and come home and make a gourmet breakfast for my family. If you don’t answer, I’ll keep calling until you do. Love it. Well, at least Linda has now gotten the true story.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Poor Linda. She’s getting a little bashing here in the comment section. You should tell your readers about your close relationship with your MIL. I don’t want her to get a bad name.

  29. chelsie says:

    I agree, I LOVE your mother in law!!! She is amazing, and her cooking is amazing too! I should have you tell her that when I came home from visiting, I craved peas so much I had to go buy some!

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