Recently, I shared how my occasional insomnia has taught me to listen to what my body, mind, and spirit are telling me…am I anxious, excited, or just plain rundown? And this weekend I was able to put that into practice.
While I didn’t have much trouble falling asleep, I did find myself awake before 7am on both Saturday and Sunday, unable to lull myself back into unconsciousness. As I lay awake at 6:30am on a day when I supposedly “should” be getting more sleep, I realized I didn’t feel frustrated by my wide eyes and alert mind – I felt invigorated and excited for the day ahead.
You see, on Saturday, I woke up full of ideas: ideas for books and blog posts, stories I want to share with you – with others. Later that day, I was to meet up with a friend in the publishing business, and I felt like a kid on Christmas morning. I couldn’t sleep; I was just too excited to unwrap the presents that the day had in store. In that moment, I realized that my inability to sleep is not always a negative effect of anxiousness or worry. Sometimes it’s just part of the unique way God has made me: imaginative, thoughtful, action-oriented. A writer.
Living into that identity as a writer means embracing even the inconvenient parts of it, including sometimes getting less sleep or getting stuck in my head until I can get the words out on a page. It requires persistence and being observant of what’s happening around me and within me. Continue reading
“Bang!” The thud of something crashing to the floor startled me out of my evening sleepiness as I walked to the kitchen to pour myself a glass of water.
I checked my room for anything that might have broken. Everything appeared to be in tact.
I opened my closet door to see if my suitcase might have fallen down from its precarious perch on my over-stuffed shelves. Nope, still there.
Checking off the boxes of possible problems in my room, I moved on to checking on the status of my roommate’s room. Katie was out-of-town, so there was no need to knock, but I still opened the door quietly and slowly, just enough to peek my head in.
Immediately, the intense heat emanating from her room struck me. The space smelled strongly of burning plastic, and I quickly realized she’d left her space heater on before leaving town. I rushed over to the power strip and unplugged the cord, wanting to ensure the thing was truly turned off. I didn’t trust myself enough just to press “off.” While I recognized that our house probably wasn’t in immediate danger, I still felt a huge burden lifted as I dropped the now powerless cord. Continue reading
For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a hard time falling asleep. When I was little, I’d lay in bed, pretending to stir the stars that blanketed the ceiling in my imagination. Or I’d lay there writing stories in my head or dreaming about my future – career, wedding, husband…I had plenty of time to plan it all in those sleepless hours.
Being a somewhat anxious child, I’d also worry about all the things that could go wrong while I was sleeping. What if there was a fire? What if something happened to my parents? What if a burglar tried to break in? As my mom can attest, my nightly prayers often included pleas for protection against any potential maladies or disasters that might come down on our household.
During my college years, my sleepless nights were fewer, probably because I was chronically sleep-deprived. Like most over-achieving academic – especially those with a long-distance boyfriend that they’d talk to on AIM (throw-back!) until the wee hours of the morning – I was lucky to get an average of five hours a night. So when my head hit the pillow, it didn’t take long to drift off into dream land.
These days, though, I’m back in the thick of it. Chasing after sleep like it’s a coveted prize. Struggling to achieve lack of consciousness, even when I’m past the point of exhaustion. Wrestling with questions about why I have such a hard time letting go and just getting to sleep for goodness’ sake. Continue reading