Sleep and Insomnia

I love a good sleep. Going to bed after a successful but tiring day, and waking up the next morning after a solid night’s sleep feeling refreshed. I also like getting around a golf course in under 90, but that rarely happens either.

I’m a lifelong insomniac. Why am I so crap at something most people can do with their eyes closed? I spend my nights not blissfully drifting through the soft mist of the subconscious in the arms of Hypnos, but staring through the dark at the ceiling.

This has happened throughout my life. Every couple of weeks or so I simply lose a whole night of sleep. It’s like the opposite of jet lag. Certainly the opposite of that extreme fatigue virus that’s going around – I spent three days early this month barely able to rouse myself into something vaguely akin to ‘awake’. But I’m so used to losing a night now and then that you’d never guess the next day. After a lifetime of this, I just don’t need to sleep every night like ‘normal’ people.

Some people blame their wakefulness on worrying through the night, trying to work out what went wrong in this situation or how they could have done better in that one. A case of The Night Will Always Win. I’ve had my fair share of that, but not recently. That’s not for proper insomniacs, that’s for worriers. Not me: Life’s pretty good, this week is great. Work is going well, and much to most people’s chagrin I get up in the mornings eager to get started. I’m taking this week off and looking after the children because it’s their half term and so my biggest worry is how much of a mess they’ll make in the kitchen and living room that I keep so tidy when they’re not here. (Answer: it may be easier to rebuild than tidy up).

So I didn’t spend last night taken by sleep demons any more than I was taken by sleep gods. No, proper insomnia is when you don’t have any real problems, except you can’t sleep.

The best sleep I’ve had in the last 24 hours was the 45 minutes after giving the children breakfast, and I curled up in my dressing gown on the edge of the bed accompanied by the great lump of feline I still laughingly call a kitten, before my eldest brought me a cup of tea. What a star.

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