I've had sleep issues for most of my life, but sometime in the past few years things settled down. I started having less trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, and I usually got about six hours of sleep a night, and that seemed to be all I needed.
But sometime around early September, in the last month or so of my being on leave, something suddenly shifted: I started regularly sleeping for seven and a half hours a night, and when I didn't get that much sleep, I was groggy and off-kilter all day.
(I read many years ago that sleep tends to go in cycles that are roughly an hour and a half long; dunno if that's true for other people, but the length of time I sleep does tend to be a multiple of one and a half hours.)
And that needing-more-sleep thing has continued to be true ever since. Sometimes I've been needing/getting even more sleep than that: Saturday night and last night, I got well over eight hours of sleep and still woke up feeling like it wasn't enough. (But I think I've had a mild cold or something for most of this past week, so that might explain that.)
All of which is fine; I've been hearing for years that most people need a full eight hours of sleep, even if they think they don't, so it's not unreasonable that I would too. But it's a little bit frustrating, because it means I have an hour and a half to two hours less time every day than I used to, and I already felt like I didn't have enough time in a day to do everything I wanted to. I'm trying to go to sleep a couple hours earlier than I used to (even though late night has often been my most productive time of day), but am still waking up around the same time as before, or sometimes later.
I've been having even more trouble than usual making progress on various things, especially responding to email and working on various longstanding projects and blogging, and I think a lot of the reason for that is just having less time in a day.
I'm aware that these are privileged-people problems. I have the time and leisure and lack of responsibilities and low stress levels to be able to get all the sleep I need, which I know many people don't. I'm certainly not suggesting that this is making my life particularly difficult.
But it is a minor frustration. And it's part of why I've been posting so infrequently here, so I figured it was worth mentioning.