Sleep takes about one-third of our lives. In my Psych 101 class I found out that there are different kinds of sleep, all of which varies greatly in degrees. The first being the most superficial kind are known as alpha waves. These happen during those mind-numbing instances in school when teachers seem to have intimate chitchats with the blackboard or simply having their daily dose of monologues. Alpha waves occur when you feel relaxed or drowsy. If you entertain the temptation to let your fluttering eyelids close entirely on their own it is highly likely that you immediately enter the hypnagogic state. During these brief moments of rest our awareness to the external world decreases, and it’s also a transition between wakefulness and sleep. I am reminded of that song by Imago Idlip with the lyrics that go, Neither awake nor asleep/Dwell somewhere in between/Neither someone nor something/Be it life alone/I walk it like a park/Half-real, half-fantasy – this song perfectly fits my experiences with my English 11 class. I could hardly keep myself up; my eyelids couldn’t actually resist the pull of gravity.
If you go on unperturbed for the next 10 minutes you are now in Stage 1 of sleep, after which you enter Stage 2 that lasts up to 20 minutes, then to Stage 3 and 4 – also called deep sleep - lasting for 40 minutes. So that’s already 70 minutes of slumbering on your seat; your classmates could be laughing at you at that very moment. You better try waking up now because your teacher might be aiming that board eraser on your skull. But then, these are the exact moments that people might find us difficult to rouse, and I’m pretty sure they don’t want to be the objects of displacement for your rage once you have waken up from your sticky slumber.
Then we also have what we call as REM sleep. For those who have just been born a few minutes ago, REM stands for Rapid Eye Movement. (And yes, it’s a name of a band with front act Michael Stipe) REM stage is when dreaming occurs. I haven’t actually observed someone sleeping for more than an hour but according to reports, when people are in this stage their eyes move very rapidly like they seem to be following the bouncing ball on karaoke song lyrics, thus the term REM. If you’re afflicted with narcolepsy you may find yourself sleeping in no time flat just about anywhere, and the thing is you immediately enter REM stage. Imagine, you’re engaged on a talk with your would-be girlfriend; you’re about to swear undying love to her. You are telling her all the sweetest things in life that in a few minutes ants swarm upon the two of you. She is on the verge of saying the heart-warming Yes but then suddenly you fell on a swoon, and you managed to use her lap on a dual purpose: as a pillow and as a bib to catch your viscous drool. Oh, narcolepsy runs in the family so maybe you could blame your ancestors for getting yourself dumped.
On the other hand, I had a very great 14 hours of sleep from Monday’s night. I slept at around 9 pm and I woke up quite earlier than others – okay, noonish. I had my not-so-inviting brunch consisting of one whole loaf of Gardenia Ubelicious and Cheesy…Swirls(?), a bowl of cream of mushroom soup, and tossed salad. Of course my day wouldn’t be complete without coffee, and as always I had guzzled more or less four cups of the drink. Around 1 pm I laid down on my bed and before I knew it I was dozing off to sleep again. Then my phone rang – somebody’s trying to disturb me. I checked out the time. It was 6.24 pm. We had dinner around 8 pm, and lights went out around 10 including mine because I can’t sleep with the lights on. So that’s roughly around five hours of being awake and 19 hours on soporific state. Loved it.
(Source: Santrock, Psychology)