I couldn't sleep last night, which is very unusual for me. Those who know me, so know that I can ALWAYS sleep at night. I'm a morning person who pretty much has consistent energy all day until around 7 p.m. That's when my brain starts to shut down, and by 9 p.m., I'm done. I'm tired. And when I'm tired, I can't fake it. I try, though. I smile, I nod, I listen. But...sooner, rather than later, I go down like a ton of bricks. I pretty much have to go to sleep right away. At the extreme of it, I've been known to fall asleep in the middle of conversations with Aqua Man (and that was when we were first dating, way before parenthood, and for some reason he said "that's the gal for me!" go figure.); while talking on the phone with one of my closest friends (post-motherhood on maternity leave); and generally every night on the couch (just regular life. yea, I'm exciting like that). So to not be able to fall asleep is a very strange experience.
To pass the time, I decided to text message a friend in a different time zone to see if she had made it out of her snowy city and had arrived safely at her sunny vacation destination. We texted back and forth for a few minutes, but then our texts stalled. When I realized that I was still wide awake at about 1:30 a.m., I decided to embrace my lack of sleepiness and make it meditation time. I knew that the tension from my day was still coursing through my body, so I decided to stop avoiding it and to just acknowledge it. In the dark, lit only by faint moonlight streaming in through the blinds, I began some light yoga stretching and asanas. When my body calmed, I put a blanket down on the couch, settled in and focused on deep breathing. Eventually I was able to calm both my mind and body while repeating a favorite mantra.
I didn't know how much time had passed, but I awoke to the sound of my cell phone signaling that I had received a new text message. I sat up, totally disoriented, and realized...Joy! I had been asleep. My wee-morning hour mediation had done the trick. Happily, I was able to go back to sleep and stay asleep until this morning at my regular wake up time.
Although, I also realized that, now I would have to officially add falling asleep in the middle of text messaging to my list of rude sleep behaviors. Bummer.