One thing I’ve noticed that accompanies the joys of parenting is a special feeling that comes early in the morning when the little guy decides the day has started, but my body clock is saying it is time to keep on sleeping (as most people’s body clocks do at 5:00 in the morning). This special feeling has only been paralleled in 1 other scenario: dealing with jetlag. Those long flights crossing many timezones with the weird air quality, elevated stress levels, and air pressure that leave you feeling like your days are long and that night should be day, for a few days or even a few weeks after the trip.
You hear a lot about not having much sleep as a new parent and always being tired. But for me, it’s not really about always being tired as a result of sleep, because we can all learn to live with less sleep. It’s more about always having your body clock messed with, as if you are always dealing with jetlag. You are tired when you wake up, and sometimes more alert when you would normally be tired. It’s a weird experience, and I think this is a contributing factor to the old saying “those early years go so quickly” – of course they do, you are doing your best to be alert and present, but you are dealing with eternal jetlag during those years which might contribute to the time whizzing by.
Of course some of the old rules to get past jetlag might still apply as a parent. For example, don’t drink a lot of alcohol and drink plenty of water, try to sleep when you can, make sure to stretch out occasionally – all of this is good life advice to follow as well. But no matter what people say, I am not going to wear compression socks all the time ;P