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Sleeping through a Pandemic

The world fell apart and is now being put back together again bit by bit. I’m trying to stay positive even though we’re not past the ruins yet. I emerge from the wreckage and rubble with something that not many of my compatriots have:

A sleep schedule.

At first, I linked it to school, but it was there before school. My eyes open at 7:00 am now, it used to be 8:00 but that’s because of external factors. My eyes would close at 11:00 pm on average. I maintained this throughout most of the pandemic. It was baffling, I was made fun of for it, but I was also praised for keeping it going.

I wondered briefly about it but chalked it up to a strict upbringing that hammered in this idea of punctuality and waking up at “proper” hours. There was something more than that though. During the school year before my sleep schedule had been all over the place. I would go out drinking and regularly pass out at the stroke of midnight, waking up groggy for my morning class which I basically slept through.

Was it just the fact that I can’t be with people after hours?


I realized that for me, the pandemic had moved quickly. Of course, it dragged occasionally, but all in all, it went fast. This wasn’t the only reason my sleep regulated, my starting situation gave me a cushion to fall on when it all came down. It’s also why I slept like a baby and wasn’t up all night wondering how they would pay rent.

Sleep is a curious thing during these times, we’re told to keep busy and not sleep the day away. I find this leads people to work themselves late into the night in the name of productivity when normally they would go to bed. A problem that already existed for students is now exacerbated by the pandemic.

So how do we fall asleep again?

I don’t know.

I spend a lot of time, probably more than I should, thinking about how to fall asleep; weighted blankets, less screen time, meditation, soothing teas, reading, writing or simply being still. Many factors are at work and yet I still see that my friends are online when I go to bed and sometimes still online when I wake up.

Do they fear sleep?

I don’t know.

I just want to say it’s ok to fall asleep when you’re tired of this pandemic, you aren’t weak for doing it, if anything I applaud you for having a bed time again.

By Swan Yue


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