Sleep

 

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Sleep is a glorious thing. Sometimes it is even better than sex. (Okay, it is often better than sex according to many women) My entire life I have never had trouble sleeping. If my head hits the pillow and I am not asleep within five minutes, I consider myself an insomniac. So imagine my discomfort and consternation at being unable to sleep the last three nights in a row. It doesn’t bode well for the family.

As I type this I am watching claws replace my hands and my back is itching violently as I scratch it against the chair. Suddenly, going to a stream in Yosemite and dunking my head underwater to catch a salmon sounds enjoyable. And my voice is also developing an edgy kind of roar.Yes, I am turning into a grumpy bear and there is not a damn thing I can do about it UNLESS I GET SOME SLEEP which seems about as likely to happen as winning the lottery.

It used to be I could handle sleep deprivation. Not anymore. When I was younger I could party with the best of them.  Pulling an all nighter wasn’t a problem. When I was in college I would stay up studying until two or three in the morning and get up at six a.m. to get to class on time. Even when Andre was a baby and was up seven to twelve times a night (now I know that can be a sign of autism) I could still function and that was when I was in my forties! But not anymore. Now I just feel like I am going to stroke out as my brain operates with a dull roar going on in the background.

I have tried everything to turn the tide. Soft music. A warm bath. A white noise maker. Going to bed early, going to bed late. Changing beds. Not eating before bed. Open windows/shut windows. Silk pajamas. No pajamas. Flannel pajamas. Aspirin. A three-year-old muscle relaxer from when I threw my back out which comes with a warning not to operate farm equipment when using it. I brought a boring book to bed and then an exciting book. I read every singe research study about sleep and scared the crap out of myself. In desperation I began counting sheep…yeah… I made it to 20, 363 before I bagged one of the annoying little B*******.

At this point I have no idea how I am going to make it through the day. My nerves are on edge, my head hurts and I can feel synapses trying to fire but they don’t have the energy. In desperation I am even considering renting a porn movie on the cable channel because if anything could put me to sleep it would be that. But I’m afraid that if I do happen to fall asleep and the kids come home from school only to see Debbie Doing Dallas I will be out of contention for The Mother Of The Year Award.

Wait a minute…the school district called to cancel our IEP so I am on the telephone explaining to them special education law as it pertains to this case AND thankfully…I feel a yawn coming on!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Words You Regret

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When we were young B was driving me to the airport and the engine in his car blew out in the middle of nowhere. He was mortified because at that point I was that dream girl he wanted to have. Forever. And a blown engine was not part of that equation of what to do to impress a girl. Nonetheless, he tried to remain valiant and cool so he put up the hood and poked around a bit, putting together this and that, in a futile attempt to get the car going again. As he worked I asked, “What can I do to help?”

“Nothing” he replied “Just sit there and look pretty.”

Being the 25 yo feminist I was, well, that just didn’t sit well with me. Sit there and look pretty. How dare he! What did he think I was, a piece of arm candy? And so I stewed about it a little before letting him know in no uncertain terms that I found that offensive and that I was more than just a decorative object.

Fast Forward 30 some years. Tonight B is cooking dinner and I ask him “What can I do to help?”

His response, “Nothing. Just sit there and look pretty.”

“Wow,” I thought. That sure sounds nice his telling me that I am pretty and all. And after all these years too. It really has a sweet ring to it.

“Remember you said that to me when your car broke down when you were taking me to the airport?”

“Yeah, I should have said it more but you got mad and told me you didn’t like it, so I didn’t think it was the thing to do.”

“I wish I hadn’t,” I said full of regret.

And with the benefit of hindsight I now realize how silly and hurtful that was to both B and I that I couldn’t accept his kind words. For 30 years I could have heard him tell me that I was pretty and I missed that opportunity. I could have heard him say “Just sit there and look pretty” with lust in his voice, with concern in his heart, or just admiring all that he saw and appreciating the complete package. Instead, I have missed 30 years of something that B could have said that was meaningful and playful to both of us. A shared memory of how far we have come and how far we could go because I was still his girl.

Regrets…I have a few.