10 May 2015

Who was that masked man?

While doing some fanatical spring cleaning in the study -- unearthing things in nooks and crannies that hadn't seen the light of day in years -- I found a pair of eye shades my son had brought home as a complimentary gift from a transatlantic flight. He gave them to me, for some reason, and I promptly set them aside.

And now, two years later, they've resurfaced. And I instantly knew why. I need to get better sleep.

Irony of ironies: I constantly preach to others that they need to get more sleep and improve the quality of their sleep in order to improve their dream memory. And me? I'm often seriously sleep deprived. I fall asleep at my desk in the early afternoon and have to go get a cup of joe to get the ol' nervous system jump started. I wake up in the morning and my first thought is not the calm question, "What were you dreaming just now?" but rather, "Oh shit! Morning already?"

So the eye shade turned up, and I saw it as an opportunity. We live in the city, and there are lots of street lights in our neighborhood. The window shades on our skylight windows make the room dark but not totally dark. A week ago I resolved to start getting to bed earlier and to start wearing the eye shade while I sleep.

Oh my God! What a difference. Now I wake up in the night having been deeply asleep for what feels like forever, and I think, "It's not morning yet?" And I've recorded detailed dreams in my journal four out of the last seven mornings; and this coming after one of the worst dream droughts* I've experienced in years.

And I'm going all Arianna Huffington** on everyone's asses, too. I've seen the light. I don't sit around staring off into the distance for hours a day just wishing to get everything over with so I can go home. Some of my old fighting spirit is returning and I'm procrastinating (a little) less than before. And that's only from getting proper sleep for a few days.

Look out world! Who knows what I'll get up to once I've been sleeping properly for a few weeks!

*A period of days or weeks in which a dreamworker just can't seem to capture any dreams in the morning. 

**I'm well aware that many of my journalist friends probably hiss and spit at the mention of this name, and I am also not the biggest fan of how her business model has impoverished the writing profession. Nonetheless, I do give her credit for preaching the Gospel of proper sleep habits.    

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