Have you ever noticed that life can be like a toilet bowl? You take a lot of crap and then the lever is pushed and everything spins until it disappears down a long tunnel. Over and over again, the same cycle repeats itself. It seems sometimes that we can never get a break. Or am I the only one who feels that way?


Why can’t humans be like the cat? They can fall asleep anytime; anyplace. It doesn’t matter what is happening in the world. There can be construction going on in the house and the cat will find a quiet place, curl up and go to sleep. How I envy the cat.


For humans, however, life is never that simple. Think about it. What is it that we hated to do when we were little, but find the most indulgent when we are adults? If you’re thinking take a nap, you guessed it.


My little one is two. Every day we lay down together for his daily “siesta”. He doesn’t want to take a nap, but I know if he doesn’t, the little tyke will get crankier than a man without his remote. So, I lay down (somewhat unwillingly) thinking I will get him sleep.  It isn’t until I wake up to the lights blinking on and off like a neon hotel sign that I realize that one of us has fallen asleep and it isn’t my two year old. “Mommy, Daddy, Mommy, Daddy” my little one is chanting as he turns the light switch on and off to the tempo of his voice. I wonder how much money I donated to the electric company in the last hour? He could have caught a cab and made his way down to the center of town, picked up some milk, made his way back, and I wouldn’t have even realized he was gone.


Americans have fallen into a rut. They feel they don’t need their sleep. Spain and all of the other European countries have it right. They eat a large lunch and then take a nice nap. This way they can party into the night and not worry about the 2 PM blues the next day. Of course, that might kill the chocolate industry. On second thought, that wouldn’t be good. Then I’d have to give up my chocolaholic meetings.


Not only do Europeans indulge themselves in naps, but they really know how to take a vacation.  Four weeks is the norm. They say that in August, things just about close down. My neighbor arrived from Germany armed with all of his European perks: four weeks of vacation, daily naps. What he didn’t realize was that once he became integrated into our culture, he would never get to take them. What he once viewed as being uncivil quickly became his “norm”. Now you hear my neighbor saying, “What is going on?  I’ve been calling overseas and I can’t get through over there, doesn’t anybody work anymore?”


My Life With Wendy tip is not to wait until you absolutely have to slow down to do so. As I laid in bed for my son’s nap, I felt my heart rate slow down. It sent gentle messages to my body that “regeneration” was in progress. Previous to this year you would have had to strap me in to get the rest I so desperately needed and deserved. On your days off, try indulging yourself. Just lay down for a few minutes, even if you just try reading. You may surprise yourself and settle in for a nice treat, even if it means the light show is soon to follow. Take a lesson from the cat. Take a catnap. You not only need it, you deserve it! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ.