Sunday, October 02, 2005


trying another colour! I love this periwinkle. . gorgeous!

I have a lot of things i could write about, but since my thoughts are drifting to matters of rest, i thought: Why not write about sleep? *does anyone know if we're supposed to put our thoughts in quotes?*

My daughter just told me to have a good sleep, I wished her the same. Of all the glorious things that life has to offer us, I think that sleep is right up there in a top 10 list, if there is such a top 10 list of life experiences. If there isn't, I could easily make one - but maybe another time - this is strictly about old 'shut eye'.

Wow, talking about sleep. . where to start?

I think that sleep is a mystery. I know all the reasons why we do it, i know that our 'operating system' goes to 'auxiliary power' for the duration, i know that dreams are all the things that scientists tell us they are. . but to my mind the whole process is mystical and even spiritual. Sleep is when we are at our most vulnerable, off guard, down for the count physically and mentally. . . it is also when we are most honest i think. A person can't pretend when they're sleeping. Their deepest thoughts manifest in their dreams, their ambitions cease, their work stops. . their childhood often surfaces. . . its a mysterious, foggy, marvelous thing.

Fetuses sleep - is it sleep, what they do while they are gestating? I'm not even sure!!! I've always assumed so. Maybe I'm wrong? But let's say they do, cuz let's face it, after the tiring birth ordeal, trying to sort out the gnawing happening in their gut that makes them screamy, growing accustomed to expelling waste and having to feel it, and having to feel in general. .( what sensory overload must be theirs?!!!), a good part of each day in their newly minted lives is all about sleeping -- 18 out of 24 hours' worth of it. Sleep = growth. Sleep = brain maturation. Sleep = a break from this crazed place they've popped into!

Children sleep - though they don't want to admit it!! Older babies and toddlers like napping. . they need to be napping! Parents need them to be napping!!! But young children - you even try to suggest that they need to go to bed, they get ugly, man! They've been around long enough by this time to know that if they shut their eyes, they're gonna miss something!!! They seem to live so much in the day that they're not even thinking of another day coming along that may also be potentially fabulous. . . they don't want this one to end!!! They employ many methods to stave off the sandman. . . stories, drinks of water, monster check, playing past lights out, getting out of bed, sneaking downstairs... personally I think these children are nuts! I loooove sleeping so much, i'm ready to 'drop and give you 40' *winks, that is* any time you suggest it! (if i don't have any caffeine in my system and if i'm not having a bout of insomnia, that is)

I used to have trouble falling asleep when I was a kid. . .that hasn't changed much really, ever. I shared a room with my sisters for many of my growing up years - i was always the last one asleep. I used to keep them awake much longer than they wanted to be. . .just so that i would have someone to talk to. When it was summer time and mosquitos had gotten into the house - they always droned in my ears and bit my flesh while everyone else in the house seemed to snooze contentedy. I could never figure this out. I had trouble shutting my brain down. . i still do. I would walk the floors at night as an 8 year-old kid, I do it now in my 40s. . . clock ticking, me tossing and turning or padding around the house in my nightgown. No matter where you put me. . . camp, sleepovers, holidays, vehicles. . .i can't seem to fall asleep. . it takes me forever -- everybody beats me to it. Maybe I just don't require as much sleep as others? I had nightmares then and I have them now. I was often afraid of going to sleep because I didn't want to dream those terrible dreams!!! I had a paralyzing fear of monsters, ghosts, the dark, things, shadows, odd noises, being alone -- I slept on back into my teens so that i wouldn't be surprised by anything or anyone. I would never let my limbs dangle outside the confines of the bedding. I had to do closet checks and under the bed checks. . geez louise, I'm a head case!!!!!

When I was really young i knew that I was finally falling when i would feel like that feather in Forrest Gump. . remember the opening credits? the feather drifting down, down, wafting in lazy circles. . . I actually saw a feather identical to that the other day as i was climbing my stairs to go back up to work. I looked out my landing window and spied this fluffy, white feather just rocking in the breeze. . i smiled. Another way that I knew i was falling to sleep, was my limbs, even my whole body suddenly jerking. . now I HATE when that happens, cuz it always startles the crap outta me!! But its always a bit exciting, because I know that my brain is finally letting go of the reins!!!

I'm getting lazy in my old age, despite battles with insomnia and too much thinking!!! *I can't even have music up loud enough that my brain hears the words, otherwise I will remain awake!* The older I get the more I love to sleep. . . I love to nap - when i work i have 'power naps', in which I dial up the timer to 15 minutes and sink into my lovely bed and zonk out until I hear the ding. . . which is most bizarre. . . cuz you know, Robbie and I have this alarm that shrieks in a manner like the shower scene music from Hitchcock's "Psycho". . . yet I never hear it. When our girls were little if they just whispered "Mommy". . I would wake from a dead sleep to go help them! I've always been unable to hear alarm clocks of any sort. . wind up jobbies, screaming mimis, loud music-playing dealies. . . can't hear them. When I was in high school my father had to shake me awake. . . if that didn't work, he'd get the lids from the pots and pans in the kitchen and bang them together repeatedly. If he was on the wrong shift, I was screwed. . . i often ran late!

So, I think that I can definitely see the shift happening. . I am beginning to like sleep more. . . so that means that I'm beginning to age, as we all know this means that give or take 30, maybe 40 years . . i'll be just like a baby again. . perhaps sleeping as many hours as they do, probably gumming pablum like they do, and wearing giant pampers. . oh boy. . . you know - i don't even want to go there!!! *i'm laughing!!!** anyway. . i'm all draggy and sleepy. . if there are any spelling mistakes, you'll know that at 2:30 i cannot guarantee coherence. I can't wait for 'touchdown'. . . which is what I call it when my weary head gets to touch down on my waiting pillow. . at which point I always say "Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh". .


Tracy said...

I used to have a lot of trouble falling asleep too. When I started taking a B-Complex multi vitamin, I started falling asleep much more easily. Then I stopped waiting for sleep too. If I had trouble sleeping, I got up and did something (but not watch TV and try to stay off the computer). I usually keep a particularly boring book on my bedside table too - those always work!

Kathryn said...

i haven't been taking my vits, i take the women's formula from GNC. . . i don't know if it really had any impact sleep wise? What does work for me is working out. . nights when i've been dancing, i just fall into bed and i'm asleep in minutes. .

thanx for the practical advice, Tracy!

Kevin said...

yea, working out can really help.

That "falling like a feather" feeling is so cool. If I feel like that I know I'm moments from sleep.

Speaking of which, I think I had better get some.


Tracy said...

I had a period of time where I worked out so much I had trouble staying awake! lol

Lindsay said...

Sleep is awesome, that is, if you're not prone to nightmares! I don't usually have any problem going to sleep at all, except if I stay up past the time that I usually fall asleep and then I'm not tired anymore. That limb-jerking thing - Mike does that all the time, it's how I know he's dozing off. Sometimes his whole body jerks and the violence of it wakes him up and he looks around all dazed and confused-like! It's funny. Have you ever had that feeling right as you're drifting off that you're falling? It's really scary for a second before you realize that you're still safely on your mattress... I wonder what causes that? I know it's your brain, but what is it doing? How about sleep talking? Now that's wierd. It's actually really creepy to hear! A sleeptalker often speaks in a strange sounding voice and really FAST. It's sometimes hard to make out what they're saying 'cause their speaking so rapidly, and what you can understand is really wierd. Whenever Mike talks in his sleep I kick him in the leg and he stops! Ha ha... Kalyn used to do it, too, when I shared the room with her, and it used to creep me out. Remember the teeth-grinding thing she did? Apparently it's fairly common.

Kathryn said...

working out does really help, you guys are right!

the body jerking thing is strange, isn't it? I often wake myself up. .i will even be dreaming that i'm stomping on something or jumping, and I will then do one of those muscle jerks and wake myself up.

talking in sleep. . i bet most people do this at least once in a while and don't even know it!
I am often aware of laughing in my dreams, you know when you're almost awake and then I will laugh and wake up. . same for crying. . i wake up from a sad dream, crying. .i hate waking up from nightmares. . cuz my heart is pounding and i'm in such a state of fright. . takes me a bit to calm down.

sleep walking is weird.. my sister Wendy did this the odd time.

supersimbo said... should write a book, seriously, you have a great way with words and your stories and memories are great reading

Kathryn said...

thanx,Ally! I love writing. I've never tried to sit down and write a book. . .maybe i could? you're so encouraging.

Tee said...

LOL - I find it hard to get a good nights sleep. First I have to shutup the voice in my head that is thinking, thinking, thinking. Like in that Lunesta commercial the lady is laying there and you hear the voice, "What am I going to do about the bills?"... ROFL. That's me... But even when I'm lucky enough to fall asleep within a short period of time, I never wake up well. I've always been like that, but the older I get, it seems to be getting worse. I feel so stiff and achey. I'll blame the mattress but I think it's just me being out of shape and not nice to my body. LOL... And being old.

Denise said...

Sorry, Kat, I haven't read the whole blog!!! I'm sinful, I know! lol!
Sleep is SO important. Since coming to Vancouver I have had no problems falling asleep...I'm usually too exhausted to think about anything by the time I climb up into my top bunk. But if there is one thing I've learned since moving back into a community environment, rest is necessary for survival.
To me that means being in bed by 10:30(except for nights when I'm out on combat exercises) and up at 6:30. Regular sleep...I've missed it these past few days and people have noticed. I don't like that!

Kathryn said...

Tee and Dee!!! your names rhyme, how cool is that?!

thanx laydeez for weighing in with your sleep talk! i also find it difficult to sleep for 2 reasons:
1. I get overtired.
2. My brain won't shut off!!

speaking of sleep. . i must get some now! nighty night!!! i hope that i get to sleep right away -- i should be able to - cuz i danced hard tonight in class. . and i'm BEAT.