4 October 2017

Sleeplessness

Normally I sleep like a log. Most nights I sleep for a solid seven or eight hours. However, once in a while for whatever reason I just can't get off to sleep or I wake up in the middle of the night and find I cannot return to sleep's embrace. 

Lying in bed waiting for sleep to come is very frustrating. You count sheep or review the previous day. You try to recite the NATO phonetic alphabet in your head... or the signs of the zodiac... or the states of America. But still sleep won't come. You change your sleeping position but an hour passes by and still sleep will not envelop you.

Finally...finally you accept the fact that it's time to get out of bed and go downstairs.

Do you recognise this my friend? Have you been there too? What do you do when you get up sleepless in the middle of the night?

I go to the kitchen and make a mug of tea in one of my favoured Hull City mugs. I grab a couple of McVities ginger nut biscuits from the tall cupboard and go into the front room. I put the TV on to watch BBC World News and switch on this laptop to surf the net once again.

Sitting here in the middle of the night an hour passes by. I switch off the computer and the TV and go back upstairs. I climb back into bed as carefully as possible so as not to disturb her ladyship and after a minute or two sleep at last takes me to its sweet forgetfulness once more and to its valleys where dreams are waiting in the sleepy shadows.

What do you do?

30 comments:

  1. I resorted to several squares of chocolate and a few chapters of a Val McDermid crime novel at 3 am a few days ago.

    Alphie

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    1. You were probably worrying about the price of fish.

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  2. Similar to what you do and as I sleep alone, I have no one to disturb. The difference when I go back to bed, I still cannot sleep and end up getting up again and staying up.

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    1. You must have a guilty conscience Andrew. If I slept alone I would put a radio talk show on - not too loud - and that would take me out of myself into the land of sleep.

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  3. I get up for the loo but not for anything else. I'm scared that if I get up and do th ings I will make it even harder to sleep so I just lie there with my thoughts.
    I had several wakeful hours a night for several years then I got some acupuncture for iron deficiency and my sleep went back to normal.
    Sometimes when I am driving to or from work in the early hours I see lights on in front rooms and wonder who is up at that time and what their story is. It's very comforting.

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    1. I think it's something all human beings share... and in the middle of the night our thoughts and imaginations are often unchained. It's not like being awake in the daytime.

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  4. You and I could have had a party last night... I often wake in the middle of the night and can't get back to sleep. I comes from my daughter not sleeping through the night until she was 8.... Years old. I've never got back to a pattern of sleeping through the night ever since. I now have to take amitriptyline to aid my sleep but even with that I have the occasional bad night. I tend to have conversations in my head - with all the the things that need dealing with next day.... conversations with my mum, my daughter, the water board, BT, etc etc etc. At some point even my own conversation bores me and I drift off again.......

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    1. I find that having Radio 4 on low helps me to sleep but I can't turn it on with Sleeping Beauty snoozing beside me. Amitriptyline doesn't sound as nice as tea and ginger nuts.

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  5. One thing I don't do is go downstairs. Mainly, it's because I have no stairs to go down. I tried to do so once since living here in this cabin, but I fell flat on my face. With a solid thud, it was a rude awakening when I realised I had no stairs or lower level!

    There are some times my mind is like a kaleidoscope hindering my ability to fall asleep. On those mostly rare occasions I bear with it, and eventually sleep comes. I think getting on the computer only aggravates the situation.

    If I dare disturb my bed buddies they let me know with a miaow!

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    1. May I extend my apologies to all who live on one level. My thoughtlessness in using the term "downstairs" is quite unforgivable but please forgive me!

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  6. I rarely have trouble getting to sleep, but am very often awake in the silly hours. I don't have a partner, so I put the tv on that I have in the bedroom. The trouble is sometimes there are really good programs on and I end up really watching them, instead of trying to go back to sleep.

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    1. If I don't get a good night's sleep I feel washed out the next day.
      Thanks for dropping by Debdor.

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  7. You're lucky that most of the time you sleep all night. I haven't found anything that helps except to get up and stretch. This stops me from continuous Moving around and sometimes I drop off to sleep

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    1. I imagine these comforting words from your Yorkshire spouse... "Red! Red! What the hell are you doing? Stop larking about and get back into bed this minute!"

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  8. I usually sleep like a log but if not I just get up and make a cup of tea. Stay up for an hour and then back to bed and hope I don't get woken too early in the morning.

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    1. Does bark flake off you during the night?

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  9. I rarely sleep more than about three hours a night. I go off to sleep very quickly but then wake up at two hourly intervals until I get up for good at around 5.15. As a consequence I feel tired all day and rarely see a whole evening's TV without napping. I do my dreaming while wide awake, mostly about getting a whole night's sleep.

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    1. I feel sympathy towards you Derek. A good night's sleep sets you up for the next day. Try six pints of Tetley's bitter. That'll get you snoring.

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    2. I've tried every remedy going over the years YP but few achieve an improvement and six pints only treble the number of times I shuffle off to the bathroom.

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    3. Perhaps a soothing oil massage by a Thai or Filipino masseuse could help you to drift off.

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  10. Apart from my frequent needs for the loo (which have ceased for the moment since they stuck a tube in my back to drain my right kidney) which generally means I'm just about a wake for 3 minutes, I rarely wake for any length of time. If I do I simply set my phone to play a playlist from iTunes through the speakers by my bed (some Mendelssohn or Elgar piano music is good for this purpose). I rarely get past the first track before I'm asleep again.

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    1. Are you saying that Elgar and Mendelssohn are such dull composers that they make you fall asleep?

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    2. If you think that my appreciation of such beautiful music is so parlous then I am sorely disappointed in your view of me YP. Some of their piano music is so peaceful yet interesting that I can lay awake and be happy and relaxed until sleep overtakes me. I'm sure that is better than you lying with your thoughts until you can no longer bear them and have to escape downstairs.

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  11. I usually sleep like the dead, but if something upsetting has happened or I have a worrying appointment for the next day it can throw me off. I read that just lying in bed resting is good for the body even if you can't sleep, and ever since reading that, it has helped keep me from getting frustrated and I can even drift off again most of the time. I think the frustration used to keep me awake more than the original reason I was awake!

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    1. Lying down with your eyes closed just doesn't cut it for me Jenny. I need the real thing.

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  12. I have a book on my iPad - The old Patagonian Express, by Paul Theroux. By far the most boring book I have ver read. It took me a full week to get through it one holiday. When sleep eludes me, a handful of pages and I'm out like a light. I can Dropbox you a copy if needed.

    It would only let me log in on my old blogger account. I'm now at https://palebluedot.co.uk/wp

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    1. I have read just about everything Paul Theroux ever wrote. I found "The Old Patagonian Express" very readable!

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    2. Each to his own.

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  13. This sounds corny but when I can't sleep I get up and work on my jigsaw, its always there on the board and after an hour or so I'm ready for bed, usually works.
    Briony
    x

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    1. No. That doesn't sound corny at all Briony.

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