I’m trying, really I am, but despite my best efforts, I can’t seem to get more sleep. It’s not that I can’t fall asleep, I have absolutely no problem with that. Once I decide I’m going to go to sleep, I’m asleep within moments. The problem is staying asleep. For some reason, I can’t seem to sleep until the alarm. If I go to bed earlier, I just wake up earlier.
It’s been like this for years – I can’t remember the last time I had eight hours of sleep, except when I’ve been sick. Maybe when I was a teenager, which was a pretty long time ago.
When I wake up, I tell myself, don’t think, don’t think, in the hope that I can go back to sleep. If I have to go to the bathroom, I don’t turn on any lights so that I don’t fully wake up. Sometimes I can fall back asleep, but if it’s 4:00 am or later, my chances are not good.
The unfortunate thing is that there’s really not a lot to do at that time of day and since I don’t really want to be awake, I’m a little grumpy. There’s an ongoing delusion that if I lie there with my eyes closed and breathe deeply and slowly, I’ll fall asleep. What really happens is that I toss and turn and feel sorry for myself because I can’t stay asleep.
If I decide to make good use of the time to read, I have to be very quiet and still because Hannah will think it’s time to get up and go for our walk. Once she’s up, it’s very hard to convince her that it’s still bedtime.
Research has shown that there are numerous benefits to getting more sleep – all of which are things that are important to me, things like:
Improving short term memory
Being a safer driver
Having healthier skin
Being more productive
Making fewer mistakes
Better overall health and resistance to disease
There’s more I would like to say on the subject, but it’s getting very close to my bedtime and I’m not going to quit trying to get more sleep. If you have any ideas about how to get more sleep in the world that would prefer that we just get more done, I’d love to hear from you!