So, I'm exhausted. My kids have all been sick for the last week – really sick, fevers, throwing up (sorry, just setting the scene), whining, “carry me”, “I don't feel well” every couple of minutes, closed drapes and too much TV kind of sick. Poor little sweet babies; I wish I could take it all away for them. I would SO be sick on their behalf anyday.

But, I was writing about my New Year's theme here. So, let me tie all this in. I am exhausted all the time. I don't sleep enough. I simply don't want to give up evening and late night hours to sleep when it is such fabulous time to talk with my husband, work on projects, catch up on work, and occasionally sit on the couch and watch TV. Ever since we had babies, I have done this – stayed up later and later to stretch out the time I have to do things outside of mothering. And it's been fine, mostly. I would get 6ish hours of sleep, have a good amount of coffee in the morning and all would be dandy.

Until… sometime recently. I don't even know when. But I either hit the critical point of sleep deprivation – or I suddenly hit the critical point of aging where my body couldn't just push through the sleep thing anymore. Whatever the cause, my lack of sleep started to really show up in my life. I was edgier. I got irritated at the girls unnecessarily. I was short with Jim when it was totally undeserved. The strangest part for me was that I FELT tired so often. I really hadn't felt tired much in my life, except right before I'd go to bed. I began feeling tired even in the morning, which is my super productive, take-on-the-world time.

I decided to test out going to bed earlier to see what impact it would have. I realize this may seem totally ridiculous to those of you out there who already held sleep in its appropriate high-value place in your life, but for me the difference was astonishing! Even just a few nights in a row of solid 7.5 to 8ish hours of sleep made such a huge difference in my outlook, attitude, the way I ate, and, in particular, in my interactions with my family, clients, friends, everyone… which is why I decided to write about it here. Sleep is so very relevant to communication! Now, slap me with the obvious hammer.

I am so enlightened that I have decided that my theme for 2009 is sleep. The goal is 7.5 hours on average a night (averaged weekly.) I am very excited to experience life with a totally full sleep tank. The problem is, I'm going to bed too late right now… hope I can figure out a way to sleep in tomorrow. Otherwise, I have to go to bed at 8pm tomorrow night to make up the sleep hours.

How much do you sleep a night? What is your ideal amount?