The Garfield in Me
Updated: Feb 20, 2022
“Garfield wakes up to take a nap so he shouldn’t be tired when he goes to sleep.”
I was introduced to the lazy cat before I could even read. I was spared that taunt, though. I got other ones custom-made for me. This one was earmarked for my sister. I branded myself differently. Never lazy. Always helping. Never saying no. A codependent in training. A drudge.
And what do you think? The decades have passed and I’ve become Garfield. Except, it’s neither laziness, nor is it the fear of being tired.
It’s the fear of being awake.
Some days I’m such a zombie, living everywhere but in the present, that all I can aspire is to get back to bed. To escape to the oblivion of sleep. To escape my home and kids and the hullabaloo and retreat into bed, under my blankets, into myself and cease to exist.
The gravitational pull my bed has on me would probably baffle even Newton. I could be anywhere, doing anything, and before I know it I’m headed to bed. At 9 in the morning. At 11 in the morning. At 4 in the afternoon. At 7 in the evening.
And the crazy thing? I usually fall asleep. Again and again.
My doctor thinks it’s the medication. My therapist thinks it’s the depression.
I think it’s crucial that I have this escape. Especially on weekends when the kids need me endlessly. Come to think of it, it's a weekend issue.
I think it’s a way of ending the day earlier. But when I sleep on and off the day feels endless. And there’s none of the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed restfulness for me after all that shut-eye. I just feel like a bag of cotton balls was spilled into my skull and I can't think straight.
So what's one to do when they feel so groggy and out of sorts? What to do when I feel horrible for wasting time, escaping the here and now, spending the weekend throwing little bones of presence and interest and care to the kids so they should not notice what I’m up to the rest of the time?
Oh, that's an easy one — go to sleep!
My bed is calling… And so is the Garfield in me.