(or Insomnia Sucks!)
I read an article a few weeks ago in the BBC News Magazine that said eight hours of sleep was a fairly recent human phenomenon. (See the article here: The myth of the eight hour sleep) According to the article, before the advent of electric illumination and gaslight streetlamps, humans would sleep for 2 four hour stretches and get up in between for some nocturnal activity. It's not too hard to guess what the nocturnal activity was long ago. The article also said that modern culture and parenting started encouraging people to sleep through the night in the 19th century, just as streetlamps and the rise of the coffee house were making nighttime activities more desirable and sucking up some of the time people used to spend sleeping.
While this is all fascinating, I just want to sleep! I don't care if I'm genetically preconditioned to pop awake in the middle of the night. For thirty years, I've been sleeping for 8+ hours a night. When I was a teen, I'd sleep for over 10 hours a night. Nighttime is when you do all your growing and when your body repairs your cells, so that kinda makes sense since I shot up six inches during the high school years.
Telling me it's okay to wake up in the middle of the night and not to worry about it, isn't helping, either. It's dark, which is a childhood fear that lingers for most of us all of our lives, and everybody knows scary things happen in the dark. The movie industry makes a fortune off of this fear every year in horror movies. I had a night light on in my room from birth til I left for college. My first college roommate wouldn't tolerate it, which is the only reason I learned to sleep without it. Now, I live in a townhouse and the lights from the parking lot provide a comforting glow if needed during the night.
Well, time to wrap this up. I just heard my alarm clock go off upstairs. Let's see how many times I can hit snooze without being late to work!