The last workweek having left me rather tired, I went to bed early Friday, after work, and then, having slept all I could sleep, I then woke back up quite early Saturday morning, before sunrise, and couldn’t get back to sleep. I was tired all day Saturday, but not too weary to think. What I thought was simple: as tired as I am, it sure would be nice to have a three-day weekend this weekend. Next, I thought, yeah, this would be nice, but that won’t make it happen. Finally, I realized that I actually could, perhaps, come up with some hopefully-clever and effective way to get the three-day weekend I want . . . and, having had an idea to do exactly that, I’m trying it right now.
I’ve tested the 24-hour sleep/wake cycle before, trying to find ways to lengthen that period of time. (Ever wanted more hours in the day? Well, I actually tried to make that happen, once, but the results were less than successful.) This time, however, I’m not trying to get extra hours in a day, but an extra day in the weekend — by simply using shorter “days,” and thus making “room,” temporally, to add an extra sleep-period and wake-period into the weekend. So, Friday, I fell asleep around 5:00 pm, and did so without the prescribed medication (which includes sedatives) which I usually take at bedtime, since it wasn’t that late yet . . . so I simply fell asleep because I was tired.
Without the sedatives I am used to taking, of course, I didn’t stay asleep anything like a full eight hours, and instead “popped” back awake at around 9 pm, which was less than an hour ago, as I write this. Rather than sedating and returning to sleep, however, I took the other medication I am prescribed for this time of the day (such as that needed to regulate blood pressure), and then made my “morning” coffee, which I am enjoying now . . . to begin the extra “day” I’m attempting to add to this weekend, between Saturday and Sunday. My hypothesis is that I can deliberately alter my sleep/wake cycle in such a way that I have three (shorter) sleep/wake cycles in two calendar days, thus giving myself a three-day weekend, of a sort, and enjoy the benefits of a three-day weekend as a result. If, come Monday, I feel like I’ve had a three-day weekend — in that I feel unusually well-rested — I will consider this experiment to “create” a working illusion of a three-day weekend, without any actual extra time, to be a success (subject to the opinion of my doctors, to whom I will describe all of this).
I plan to stay awake until roughly dawn on Sunday, and then go to sleep until, well, whenever I wake up. I’ll then have a shortened post-sleep Sunday wakefulness-period, go to sleep at a reasonable hour Sunday night, and get a good, full night’s sleep then, before going to work on Monday.
Right now, therefore, I’m having the middle “day” of what feels, subjectively, like a three-day weekend, and having it at night, between what seems, now, like it was yesterday (the shortened Saturday), and what I anticipate as my shortened Sunday, after I sleep again, tomorrow. Since it’s easier to talk about this extra “day” I’m having tonight if I give it a name, I’m doing so: I’m calling it “Nightday.”
Some readers may object that I’ve merely come up with an overly-convoluted way to analyze a four-hour Saturday-afternoon nap. I’ll concede that they do have a point . . . but if my calling this “Nightday,” and telling myself that I’m enjoying a three-day weekend, actually turns out to help me feel and act more rested next week, then I’ll take those benefits and run with them, regardless of what any critics tell me (unless, of course, my doctors are among those critics). If this experiment has only beneficial results, and passes medical review, then I’ll likely use more Nightdays to get additional three-day weekends in the future, whenever I need, or simply want, them.
Important disclaimer: nothing in this blog-post should be taken as any form of medical advice, for I am not medically trained. I have taken the precaution of discussing my practice of occasionally inventing and conducting experiments such as this with my own physicians, and will continue to do so. No one should attempt to replicate this experiment without first consulting their own physician(s).
[Image credit: the photo of the Moon shown above was found here — https://photographylife.com/moon-waning-gibbous. It isn’t identical in appearance to the current waning gibbous Moon, having been photographed quite some time earlier, but it is close.]