Coffee and Thunderstorms

I have difficulty sleeping. I lay in bed for hours tossing and turning. Every little sound wakes me up. It’s always been that way. Not sleeping well has become part of my personality. I’m shy. I’m quirky. I’m a bad sleeper. That’s why when my husband started claiming that I was just dreaming about not sleeping instead of not sleeping in reality, it really threw me for a loop.

My husband claims that on all those nights that I didn’t sleep a wink, I was snoring away. Yes, sometimes I snore, but it’s a very nice lady-like snore that sounds like fluttering angel wings.

Recently, the dog has been keeping me up. If he sleeps in our room he moves around and breathes too much, and if he sleeps someplace else in the house he still moves around and breathes. When I ask my husband if all that moving around and breathing bothers him he just looks at me like I’m crazy. “Would you rather he didn’t move or breathe because maybe we should’ve gotten a stuffed dog instead.”

He’s got a point. I never considered the stuff dog option before–less walking, less feeding, less poop. The downside is that I’d have to work a whole lot harder to annoy a stuffed dog, and everyone knows I like to work as little as possible.

Last night I swore I smelled the dog brewing coffee in the kitchen. I sat bolt upright in bed and said to my husband, “He’s making coffee.”

My husband groaned and rolled over, and I ran to the kitchen. The dog was in there, but he was just wagging his tail. There didn’t seem to be any coffee brewing, but he could’ve have been hiding it.

After that I kept smelling coffee, and then there was a thunderstorm. I just couldn’t get back to sleep.

My husband thinks this was all a dream, but why would I dream about the dog making coffee? It really happened. That’s why my brain has been mush all day. That’s why I can’t seem to form complete sentences. At least that’s what I’m telling people when they ask. I’m tired because there was a thunderstorm and my dog kept making coffee last night. It makes sense, right?

Wake Up Before Nine …. No Way

I’m exhausted today because I got up way before any sane human being should–seven thirty. You see normally I have the luxury of sleeping in until about nine. That’s what happens when you work for yourself and no longer have a school-aged child in the home.

When some people hear that I sleep until nine they try to shame me by saying things like, “Heck, I’ve already written a thirteen hundred page novel and constructed three of the walls of the vacation home I’m building myself out of popsicle sticks and elephant dung.” I think they are trying to imply that I’m lazy because I don’t haul my butt out of bed before nine. I’m not lazy though. I just value sleep.

People like my mother will stay up until one in the morning and wake up at five and say something like, “I only really need four hours of sleep.” It’s like a way of proving yourself. “I only got two hours of sleep last night and I’m totally fine.” People act like getting up early is some kind of virtue. Remember these ads for the army.

Talk about a way to get me not to want to join the army. Since when is having an extremely busy morning a way to attract young adults. Hey nineteen year old who normally sleeps until one you should join the army so you can get up really early and do a whole lot of stuff before nine in morning.

I actually thought about joining the military once because I like uniforms and guns, but then I realized that I’d have to get up way too early so I applied for a job at the post office instead … because I like uniforms and guns. They never called me back because apparently putting that you like uniforms and guns on your application makes them reluctant to hire you. I should’ve explained that I meant water guns. I didn’t care though because postal workers have to get up way too early in the morning too.

In order to be a nice person that others might want to have a bit of a conversation with I have to get at least eight hours sleep and those eight hours must be between one and nine. That’s all there is too it. Otherwise, I’m walking around like a frizzy haired zombie that will suck all of the happiness and joy out of you because I’m too tired for smiling or conversation.

That’s why I’m exhausted today. That’s why I lumbered by you without saying hello or even giving a head nod of acknowledgment. Tomorrow I’ll be sure to wake up at a more reasonable hour and you can tell me all about how far you’ve gotten building your vacation home then.

Photo by gui.tavares

What’s That Noise?

Last night, I was peacefully sleeping in my warm, comfortable bed dreaming about grocery shopping when I was awakened by a beep. I opened my eyes briefly, but when I didn’t see anything out of the ordinary in our dark bedroom I closed them again. As soon as I did it heard it again.


“Did you hear that?” I asked my husband who responded by groaning.


I swore it was getting louder. “That…What’s that?” I asked again.


“Just ignore it,” my husband said.

“Ignore it! How can I ignore it?” I was wide awake now and angry. I have such a hard time getting to sleep at night that I really don’t appreciate it when something wakes me up. Convinced the noise was coming from the alarm clock, I picked it up and started trying to take the battery out.


“I can’t believe this,” I was practically yelling as I struggled to remove the back from the clock. I was getting ready to throw the clock against the wall hoping it would smash into bits when my husband finally spoke again.


“Calm down,” he said as he rolled over.

“How can I calm down?” I got up and took the clock to the hall where I could turn on the light and figure out how to put it out of operation. After a few minutes of wildly pawing at the cover on the back I gave up and returned to the bedroom.


“It’s not the clock,” my husband said.

“What is it then?”

“I don’t know, but it’s not the clock.” He lay there with the blanket over his head.

Eventually, I found the telephone off its charger at the side of the bed. The batteries must have been running out and it was letting us know.

Thanks to that brilliant warning system I lost a little over an hour’s sleep. It takes me that long to regain my sleepiness. It’s a good thing the phone is charged, otherwise I would’ve missed the telemarketer calling for Mrs. Jenkins a few minutes ago.

Early to Bed Early to Rise

Some people like to get up early. They like to see the sunrise. It makes them feel like they’ve got more time in the day. I know some of these people, and I’m definitely not one of them. I don’t have much need to see the sunrise. I see it set everyday. I think that’s pretty much the same thing just in reverse. In my opinion only the clinically insane would want to wake up before the sun comes out. Nobody needs that much time in their day.

My mother has always gotten up very early. I’m not trying to imply that my mother is insane. I’m just saying that she likes to have a lot of time in her day. At 11:30 at night she’d say things like, “I have to get to bed soon. I have to be up by 4 in the morning after all.” She likes to brag about not needing much sleep. My mother’s minimal sleep requirements used to be what I aimed for. I thought this was a pretty good goal. I’d read websites about how to shorten my sleep requirements. Then I’d try these techniques out and always come to the same conclusion. Sleeping less definitely gives you more hours in the day–more hours to suffer for the splitting headache you have from not getting enough sleep.

I used to think it was because I needed 8 hours of sleep, but recently I discovered that isn’t exactly true. I’ve realized that as long as I don’t get up before 8 o’clock  I’m fine. I could go to bed at 7 in the morning and get up an hour later and be totally fine. I would never do that of course because I don’t need that many hours in my day. Ideally I’d like to sleep until 9 or 10 or maybe even 11:32, but life isn’t always ideal.

The saying goes, Early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise. I’d like change that saying to early to bed, early to rise makes a man unable to get to sleep at night, gives him a huge headache the next day and puts him in a  bad mood. That saying probably won’t catch on, but I think it’s more realistic.