Friday, 27 January 2017

Awakenings


If last night were a horror film, I’d call it 'Night of the Insomniacs'.

Admittedly, it would make for a dull movie, as it would just consist of me not sleeping for the duration, which isn’t really a spectator sport. It went on for so long - and with no let-up - that on more than one occasion, I considered calling it a write-off and just getting up. My breaking point in the end was 6:30am, as this felt close enough to a reasonable time to call the night a day; if I hadn’t fallen asleep by then, I clearly never would.

To be fair, this hasn’t happened to me in ages. For the past few months, I’ve kicked off most nights listening to a ten-minute sleep meditation that has knocked me out without fail. It’s been so effective as to almost be mystical in its success. Prior to using it, I’ve never been one for falling asleep easily and certainly never so consistently quickly; it’s truly been a godsend.

I know what the problem was. I met my friend Stephen yesterday afternoon for a coffee that gradually transformed into a Guinness or two, which led to me coming home later than intended and eating dinner not long before bed. For me, this is an evil twosome. While I’ve never been a big drinker, in recent years, I seldom react well to it at all; it’s a clear recipe for a broken night’s sleep, though not usually to the extent of yesterday, when I didn’t sleep at all.

What I should have done was get up at a point when the night wasn’t lost and read until I grew tired enough to go back to bed to try again; that would have been too easy. Instead I tried to sit it out, in the foolish belief that, despite having not happened for hours, Mr. Sandman would suddenly do the trick. I’ll never learn. Perhaps the time has come to turn teetotal? I’m too old for this. I don’t know how Keith Richards manages it (and he's older than anyone).

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