Sleep, beautiful elusive sleep


sleeping tabby cat

Here is Hazel, fast asleep on her favorite window sill (which must be uncomfortable)!

Back in the old days just a few years ago I loved to sleep. Crawling into a comfy bed at night and relaxing my body felt so good. 

Give me fresh sheets, silky sleep wear and life was good. I would look forward to the end of the day as I did to the start. Refreshing. 

That was then. 

Since I’ve entered middle-age good sleep has been more elusive. (Mid-60s is middle age, isn’t it? Yes, I intend to live to 120!). 

At first it was just during stressful times that I didn’t sleep well.  

Then my nagging bladder made sure there was at least one run overnight or maybe two or three. 

My former ability to sleep through absolutely anything (my mother thought I could sleep through a bomb blast) left me. 

A fish fart in my pond can wake me up. (Note to self: Take fish off the high fiber diet!) A conversation three blocks away can wake me up. The garbage truck is a no brainer especially that back-up beeper. (Why do they collect garbage at 4 a.m.?) 

There is a pattern — a few good nights, then a bad night or two, then a few good nights. Repeat. Sigh. 

I especially hate the 2 to 3 a.m. wake up. I will be up until around 5 a.m. or so. Then I don’t want to get up at a normal time. I am dopey all day (no comments please). 

Without 7 to 8 hours of sleep, I am not my upbeat perky self (again, no comments please). I slump at 3 p.m. Chocolate is the drug of choice for that. 

I’ve tried getting up and doing things. I’ve written blogs in the middle of the night. Then I am fully awake and the chances of ever falling back to sleep are nil.  

Staying in bed in a semi-conscious state of awareness seems to give me some rest. It can also give me some very weird dreams. 

At my age I no longer have stupid sex dreams with really strange partners. (Come on, I know you had them too.) That used to be freakish. It was always awkward because it felt like the other person must know. Hopefully they were dreaming about Angelina Jolie instead of me. 

Now my weird dreams are of people hacking at my shrubs. It’s way more peaceful. 

I envy kids who can sleep anywhere, anytime, anyway. Youth is definitely wasted on the young!

Oh yes and my cats who can sleep anytime or all the time!





27 thoughts on “Sleep, beautiful elusive sleep

  1. Pingback: When I Am Well Rested . . . | Spirit Lights The Way

  2. I have the 3:30 wake up time and lately the 12:30 wake up time and then I am up. Well, awake on the couch with the puter or my Paperwhite or fooling with pictures in Elements. I hate this sleep pattern I am in, It’s like working nights.


  3. When I was a kid, I also could sleep thru anything. That includes a lightning storm and fire trucks roaring by our house on the same night. Didn’t hear a thing. Now, like you, I often get up in the middle of the night. I usually eat a banana and then I go right back to sleep – usually. I don’t why it works. Bananas are supposed to be for leg cramps, not sleep deprivation. Still … give it a try. It couldn’t hurt. 😉


  4. I’d be shocked if I didn’t have to get up twice per night. For quite a while though it was just once and since it always seemed to be 2:45 a.m. I joked to myself that it was “quarter to pee.”
    Too often on sleep deprived days, like today, I’ll find myself sitting at the computer in the midst of an email with my eyes closing and my head nodding.


  5. No one over age 40 who I know sleeps soundly. It’s weird now that I think about it, but true. I’ve given up on the idea of a sound night’s sleep– which somehow makes sleeplessness seem better. Reverse psychology, I guess.


  6. Hopefully the no-sleep syndrome you are describing will disappear soon. I just went through a bout of bedtime at midnight, waking up at 4 AM, staring into space until 6 AM, and the sleeping until 9:30 or 10 AM. Then the day was all ruined. Breakfast at 10, Lunch at Noon? Stomach upset. That went on for a week but mysteriously disappeared. I am back to sleeping through thunder storms and looking forward to bedtime. “This too shall pass” Kate. This too shall pass.


    • I’m afraid not. It’s been happening more frequently over the past year. I remember my mother not being able to sleep regularly. She blamed it on aging. I blame it on being blonde! You are so right about sleeping late. It does ruin the day.


  7. I hear you, Kate. I have no problem falling asleep, but staying asleep just doesn’t happen. Typically I go to bed around 9:00 and I’ll sleep until 2:00 or 2:30, after that, I lay there with a busy mind.


  8. The best sleep I’ve gotten in the past 15 years ~ in the hospital, after surgery, with a morphine drip. *Click* ~> Sweet Dreams.

    One thing you might try ~> Brazil nuts. I got some the other day (just because I like them), then checked on-line for nutrition info. Saw several people saying that eating 2-4 a day helped them sleep more soundly at night.

    Last night I had a 4 hour stretch before waking ~ got up, went back to bed and fell asleep in record time for another 3-4 hours. The night before a solid 5 hour stretch (!) before waking to make a piddle run. Then back to sleep for 4 hours.

    Sleep Rocks!


  9. There you go again – speaking for me! 🙂 One thing I’ve done is give myself permission to write whatever on earth I feel like writing. My ‘escape clause’ is the promise to myself that I have the right to delete if I feel terrible about it when I’m well rested. Some I end up putting in my password-protected journaling file. My other ‘strategy’ (gives the state some dignity?) for sleepless nights is to play Mah-Jong – which I downloaded. That’s for 3 a.m.’s when I feel too stupid to write. The upside for us sleepless types is we become better than average at coping, and knowing we’ll survive it. I never knew my daughter received this idea, until she had tattooed on her body “This too shall pass.” I kid you not!


  10. You have my sympathy Kate…I’ve been plagued with sleeplessness most of my life. Awful. Now that I’m an adult Fibromyalgia has reared its ugly head compounding the problem along w/a few other things. Oh well, make the best of it is my personal mantra. I had two car accidents in a short time which caused serious neck injuries…after which I became addicted to RX drugs for 13 years…talk about sleep? None. Fast forward to now…I found a solution and have nice nights with good, healthy sleeping. I am most thankful for that. Going w/o is horrible. Hope you get relief aka sleep. Thanks for the good thoughts. There are so many who have the same problem. Ouch.


    • It does seem to come with age. My husband has never been a good sleeper and rarely gets more than 5 hours a night. A steady diet of that would make me cranky. Glad you found a solution.


  11. I am the same way in my late 50’s. Sleep 2-3 hours one night or two, then sleep well for a night or two. Naps are good when I can. I miss being able to sleep through anything. But I guess being up early, as a pet sitter, is useful.


      • The worst for me is when I’ve had 2-3 hours of sleep, and a full day of clients. Very hard to be enthusiastic and creative when you’re exhausted.


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