Tag Archives: Sleep

In the Wee Hours

The mind and the brain can be a curious bedfellow at times, especially at night whether asleep and dreaming, or awake in the wee early hours trying your darnest to fall back to sleep. I’ve never been a great sleeper, the slightest unusual noise will wake me up, as will a sudden alteration in sound, which is why I dislike falling asleep listening to the radio or television or to audiobooks. As soon as a voice changes, the pitch or volume on music switches or the recording comes to an end, then bang – I’m wide awake. A solid 7-8 hour night’s sleep is a rarity; I get by on a broken 5 or six hours at most. I have no trouble going to sleep initially, it’s the staying there I struggle with. And if I do fall back into dreamland, I have the most peculiar dreams. I’ve always been like it.

But this has advantages, for it’s during this time I fix things. In my head. Like plot issues in my novel or have a marvellous idea for another book. Work out what my characters are going to do or say next. When I was doing the 9-5 life, I’d solve a dilemma or figure out a solution to problem in the office. In my head I’d rehearse what I need to say to someone. Finger out how to fix something broken. Decide on what we are going to eat for our Sunday lunch, even if it’s only Tuesday morning. I’m used to this and am sure I’m not the only one who experiences these things.

But lately, my mind has been working in an unexpected way. It seems for no reason I can fathom, I suddenly recall songs from my childhood, ones I’d forgotten about, surprising myself I can even remember the words. If it were pop songs of my teenage years, then I could perhaps understand it. I love music and that of the 60s and 70s especially, but these are songs often from further back.

Ones such as Cool Water “All day I face the barren waste without the taste of water. Cool water…” Old Shep “When I was a lad and Old Shep was a pup through the hilltops and meadows we’d stray…” “Carolina Moon …keep shining, shining on the one who waits for me…” Little Green Frog “There’s a little green frog, swimming in the water, a little green frog, doing what he oughta…” “Don’t You Worry …my little pet, don’t you worry now, don’t forget…” You get the jist. And I wonder how many of these you are singing right now. (Sorry)

These are just a few of them I hear, and many are the B side to records, ones rarely played, let alone remembered. Okay, so I know I grew up hearing these songs. With older siblings and parents who loved music, the radio or the gramophone playing, that is no small wonder. But why, I ask myself, should all these come flooding into my brain at 2 0’clock in the morning! Are they trying to tell me something?

I’ve tried thinking back to any incident or conversations recently that may have jogged open an old memory of them. Tried hard to recall hearing them on an advert on TV. Have I read any recent articles or books that might mention them or their singers? Nothing! So for the moment I have to content myself with “listening” to them, at least they are songs I like, and they in themselves are bringing back happy days memories of childhood and family. I just wonder what my brain will conjure up next to earworm me through the night.

Has anything like this happened to you?

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Sleep Interruptus by Valerie J. Patterson

Mr. Sandman and I–apparently–are not currently on speaking terms.  I’m not all too certain when our relationship turned or–for that matter–why it turned, but, alas, it has.

Mr. Sandman was, at one time, my very dear friend.  Now, it appears he has found a new hobby, a new friend, or has simply decided to go shopping, on vacation, or is watching TV or reading a book and is no longer interested in whether or not I get a deep, full, revitalizing slumber.  He didn’t leave me abruptly so that I would notice his departure immediately.  No, in fact, he slowly backed out of our relationship until one night–in the wee hours of the morning–I was left wondering what had happened to our once stellar relationship.

To the best of my recollection, it all began one fateful night in May when I awoke somewhere between two and three with dizzying thoughts of the day ahead’s full calendar.  I figuratively ran through what was sitting on my desk, which really was a manageable amount of work, then tucked my arm under my pillow, settled back down, and fell back into a restless, tossing-and-turning sleep that did me no good.

From there, it just progressed into being robbed of more and more sleep each night until I finally reached the point I’m at right now–Sleep Interruptus!

It’s maddening, really.  I get to listen to my hubby sleeping soundly.  I get to listen to the traffic I normally never hear.  There’s the occasional cat fight, bump in the night, and let’s not forget counting the time between when the central air kicks off and kicks back on again.  Oh, and I get to plan out the coming day like nobody’s business.

I’ve got remedies for Sleep Interruptus like reciting the 50 states in alphabetical order frontwards and backwards.  Running through the alphabet and reciting only girls names that end in “LY” or boys names that actually contain two names in one like Ed-Ward and Wil-Liam.  Oh, I can get creative!  Mostly, I’ve turned to saying my prayers again or counting my blessings.

I’m fairly certain Mr. Sandman has begun to come around and his attorney is talking to my attorney about mending our relationship instead of divorcing from it entirely and finally.  I’m really looking forward to rekindling the romance with sleep!

So how about you?  What remedies do you have for giving Sleep Interruptus the heave-ho?

Until next time, may Mr. Sandman come calling each and every night, and may your dreams be sweet and light.