I’d worked eight days in a row and had only one upcoming day off before Christmas. I needed that day off to rest. But I’d already designated the time to Christmas shopping and helping my wife get ready for our big Christmas Eve party.
The problem with wives is they have our best interests at heart. Aside from wanting to buy the more expensive dryer because it had 10 more features (10 features I knew we’d never use), my wife is always looking out for me. Even that duvet cover for the bed was really for me.
“Don’t you know you’ll be happy if your wife is happy?” she said. “Happy wife, happy life.”
Now my wife was proposing something else that was good for me -- rest.
“How do you expect to get better if you don’t let your body recuperate?” she asked.
She didn’t have to tell me. I’m a huge fan of rest. Some people look at sleep as something you do to relax. I look at it as an art form. Beautiful things come out of sleep and relaxation -- great ideas, more energy, fantastic trains of thought and an immune system with the troops and firepower capable of fighting off a flu that, in my body, was currently looking like the attack on Pearl Harbor.
“OK, I’ll rest,” I promised my wife when my day off finally arrived. But, like I said, she didn’t have to force me to sleep. Sleeping is my true passion.
That morning she woke and announced her plans to take our 11-year-old son out for a full day of Christmas shopping and errands, giving me all the peace I needed to rest and recuperate. My wife is so thoughtful. Except she left me with myself.
Once she was up, I was up, and I was thinking about all the Christmas shopping I had to finish. I was also thinking of the nativity set I never got a chance to put up.
That nativity is a centerpiece for Christmas in our house, I thought. I can put that up real quick -- no problem. Then I’ll get back in bed and get to that resting I know I need.
I waited for my wife and kid to depart and then I shot out of bed and, without even changing my clothes, went to the garage for the nativity set. It took me less than two hours to set up the scene of the birth of Christ. All I needed was an extension cord to power the Christmas star in the sky, and then I’d rest.
One quick thing always leads to another real quick thing. My plan was to run down to the store real quick and get an extension cord. How can you not have a Christmas star in a nativity scene?
Once I’m up and on the move, I have a hard time getting back to sleep. And once I’m at the store for an extension cord for the nativity, I have to knock down some Christmas shopping. I’d be quick.
I saw the video game my son wanted, only it was for the wrong video game system. I’d have to go elsewhere to get the one we needed. I could do that -- the video game store was only across town.
While I was on my way to another store to get another gift real quick, my wife called. I couldn’t let her know I was out of bed. I answered like I’d been sleeping.
“Um, he-llo,” I said in a groggy voice.
“How are you feeling?” she asked.
“Good. I was just sleeping. Rest is definitely what I needed.”
“I’m calling you from home where you’re not sleeping, not from my cell,” my wife informed me.
“Well,” I said with a few coughs I couldn’t control, “I got my Christmas shopping done (cough), and I put up the nativity, although I still have to plug in the Christmas star (cough, cough), which I can do real quick when I get home with the extension cord I just got (ha-chew!).”
“But now the day is over, you haven’t rested, and you sound worse than before.”
She was right. I had to get home, eat dinner real quick (I’d light up the Christmas star without her knowing), and get to bed.
Before I knew it, morning arrived and my alarm was screaming in my ear. One quick snooze leads to another real quick snooze. And once I’m down and that sick, I have a hard time getting back up.
I snoozed my alarm way too many times. I barely made it to work on time. By the time Christmas showed up, I felt fine and totally capable of helping my son play with the toys he got.
The real problem is that wives have our best interests at heart. My wife was going to make me get that rest I knew I still needed. So on New Year’s Day, my next day off, I made plans to sleep all day. First, I’ll take down the Christmas decorations. I’ll be real quick.