The second best healer
"Last week I probably slept an average of two hours a night. ... I couldn't stop thinking. My body was exhausted, and my mind was still going." Heath Ledger told Lyall during his short, sleepless life. As a child, I had zero tolerance for a day without 8 hours of sleep. Even 7.5 hrs will let the missing 30 minutes make me slog through classes and be less attentive in the interactive sessions. However, mid-life brought with itself a new awakening. Emotional highs and lows made my hyperactive brain take over my self-discipline.
I lost sleep every day, with every minute, with every second and with every memory; and eventually, the memory itself.
Today, every time I'm home alone, my energies are put to test. I fight for one good night's sleep. I run, bike, exercise and do a lot of it to exhaust myself and sleep; but every theory fails when my brain starts dancing and shows me all sorts of creatures. The emptiness of the house becomes a dark social gathering. But somewhere between the madness, when I do get some sleep, I sit & analyse to arrive at a reason.
Looks like love, care and affection are integral to my sense of security. I can't sleep unless am assured that everything will be fine. It's the warmth of guard that gives me some peaceful sleep. You might think that I need someone 'close' for this. Well, only people I trust can give me cover. It's like being a baby who needs a comforting lap, a lullaby and some patting in rhythm to fall asleep. And every time someone comes to comfort me, I upgrade them to the level of an angel.
Having said this, it's not that I'm sleeping enough even with my angels around. I have slept on an average of 4.5hrs for the last 1 year and I can see the insomnia taking a toll on my health and productivity. I have decided to learn to shut the brain up and let my body rest for long enough.
To begin with, I have stopped keeping an alarm for the past 1 week. I am going to learn and follow few more things from this great research report : http://www.supermemo.com/articles/sleep.htm
There is so much more sleeplessness to fix. But for now, I am writing after a comfortable 7 hour-sleep last night and I'm reminded of someone telling me this long ago,
"Sleep is the second best healer, the first being love!"