Everything — and I mean everything — is quiet at 3 a.m.
The dog isn’t barking. The TV and all the lights in the house are off. Traffic flow in front of my suburban house is nil. And My Beloved is snoozing.
Snoozing. Isn’t snoozing a great word? That’s exactly how my Beloved sounds at 3 a.m., a cross between a wheeze and a snore that soothes me to sleep.
When I can sleep.
But I couldn’t sleep last night.
So I was eating leftover combination fried rice in my robe and recklessly buying things online.
Whoa! How did I get here?
Ironically, I heard a piece about the value of sleep on NPR’s Weekend Edition yesterday morning and I smugly thought to myself, “Well, no problem there. I’m a good sleeper.”
Pride goeth before a fall.
Normally, I am a good sleeper. I go to bed at a reasonable hour, I dream, I wake rarely (and usually only when my recalcitrant dog thinks she needs to make a midnight run in the back yard), and I get out of bed in the morning without an alarm.
Last night, I had no reason to experience disrupted sleep. I was coming off three days of beaming successes (a satisfied client on Friday, a productive book fair on Saturday and a fabulous birthday party for my mother-in-law on Sunday), and everything else in my life is copacetic so no worries to gnaw at my unconscious mind. General health? Good. Didn’t have too much caffeine or alcohol before bed. My Beloved was snoozing, not sounding like a wounded grizzly bear, so I can’t blame him either.
Why was I lying awake at 2:40 a.m.?
I still don’t know. Maybe it’s those damn perimenopausal hormones. Let’s blame them.
I got out of bed, went downstairs and got cozy in my oversized living room chair with my iPad.
Well, 45 minutes later, after I’d read every post on my Facebook Newsfeed, I tried concentrating on deleting emails from my InBox when I came upon an invitation to “Like” a new author’s Facebook page.
Hey, wait a minute, I didn’t know Heather Slee was an author!
I worked with Heather Slee at one time, and I knew she was a writer, but I had no idea she’d gone and published a book. A memoir no less! Hey, I love memoirs! “Expect This: A Pregnancy Memoir” is about a “formerly anti-kids couple who decide to go for it,” and the first review on Amazon says, “I laughed pretty hard.”
A light read about someone else’s pregnancy — and hormonal problems on the other end of the child-bearing spectrum — sounds like a panacea for insomnia if ever there was one.
Only 99 cents? Buy now with 1 click!
This is what’s beautiful and highly dangerous about ebooks: Instant gratification.
By about Chapter 3, I decided I was hungry. Yeah, that’s why I can’t sleep. I can never sleep when I’m hungry. Yes, I had a snack before bedtime but apparently the popcorn and dark chocolate didn’t cut it. Hmm, what could I eat? Yes! That leftover combination fried rice should fill the inexplicable void.
I delighted in a greasy snack only those with Night Eating Syndrome indulge in at 4 a.m. while reading two more chapters before deciding it was time to go back to bed.
I review Slee’s book on my author blog, but suffice it to say, it was a funny substitute for counting sheep and infinitely better than deleting old emails. Instead of thinking about how I have … to go … to sleep … NOW, I started counting my blessings for never having had to go through a pregnancy.
I shut down my Kindle, crept back into bed and snuggled up to my Beloved. By now, the quiet was inviting instead of oppressive.
And I went back to sleep.