So one of the routines I wanted to implement was to shut down all screens at 9:30 p.m. Not check email, not watch TV, just read and fall blissfully asleep like all the sleep experts say will happen when your face isn’t in front of a screen until you nod off, drooling like an idiot.
Last night I tried it. Screens off at 9:30. Read part of Morrissey’s autobiography until just before 10, and was actually feeling drowsy so I turned off the light, shut my eyes, and awaited sleep to descend upon me like the dew from heaven.
And I started thinking:
My doctor never did schedule that mammogram. Those twins on the news the other night were 10 years younger than me and got double mastectomies. Maybe I have breast cancer. I should schedule a mammogram.
CALM DOWN. GO TO SLEEP.
I should really get my application to grad school in. I think I have until April, but the musical is going to start soon, and when is A.J. going to schedule rehearsals and will I have time to work out this year? If I wake up at 5 a.m. I will, but what happens if I can’t fall asleep, and if waking up consistently at 5 a.m. makes me sick eventually? I mean, I have plenty of sick days, but what if I need to use them after I postpone my mammogram for too long and I have chemo? And if I have to do chemo, how will I walk up the stairs? Will I have to move to a ground floor apartment, and who will pack and move everything for me?
CALM DOWN. GO TO SLEEP.
I never did finish creating that assignment for Journalistic Writing. Maybe I should get out of bed right now and do it. Except I’d need a computer screen, and NO SCREENS AFTER 9:30, MOMMIE DEAREST! Is my dad really going to retire this year, and what will he do with his time? And that means I’ll probably retire in 15 years and I don’t have a house and I’ll have to move back in with my parents when I’m 55 or 60 because I foolishly thought I’d be married by now and would be living in a house with a family of my own, but that’s CLEARLY not happening, so really what is the point of living?
By 10:15 I had worked myself into quite the frenzy, so I pulled out my iPad, fired up Netflix and put on Ken Burns’ National Parks documentary. I’ve been falling asleep to the sounds of familiar movies or TV shows for over a decade now, so why fix what ain’t broke, you know?
I don’t remember looking at the clock after 10:30, so I must have drifted off soon after, but I slept restlessly the whole night–not ever really feeling like I was fully asleep. I’m blaming that on my overdrive brain meltdown in the name of “healthier sleep routine.”
So tonight, I will keep my promise to myself to not check email after 9:30, just to set a firmer boundary between work and school, but I’m for darn sure going to be falling asleep to a movie or TV show.