Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Mystery of the Sleepless Nights

The past few nights I have had some serious difficulty falling asleep. That happens sometimes with me, especially when I am not exercising on a regular schedule everyday (which of late, I haven't been), but this time around it's been... different.

But then, last night, I figured out why.

Ever since I was little, in fact, I think since I was a newborn, I've slept with my stuffed polar bear Snowy and my special blanket. Yes, I realize that I am way past the age where it is appropriate to sleep with such things, but bear with me for a second. Snowy, I intend to keep until that far off day when he disintegrates. Honestly. I usually sleep with him tucked under my arm, which has resulted in his shape resembling less of a polar bear and more of a flattened seal. At somepoint in high school or college some friends started calling him Square Bear. The blanket is silk, or it once was--now it's very thin and bear, and tattered, although it still feels silky. The thing is, the blanket I wrap around my head when I sleep.

I realize this sounds ridiculous, but again bear with me.

When I was little I used to have terrible nightmares--I started wearing the special blanket around my head because I would use it to cover my ears. Overtime I became essentially addicted to this--having my ears covered while I sleep, and by a silky feeling fabric (one reason I've always loved camping and sleeping in sleeping bags, because the sensation is quite similar). Because of the whole wrapping the blanket around my head thing (some friends would call it my turban), when I actually do sleep (you know for some reason I feel like I have blogged about this before but I have terrible memory retention so who knows) I have the blanket wrapped around my head and the covers up to my chin. There's really just an opening for the lower half of my face.

When I was in New York over the holidays, just before flying back to LA, I decided that as I was turning 25 I would no longer sleep with the blanket. Snowy would never go, but it was probably time for the blanket to get tucked away somewhere. I am a big girl, after all. I debated leaving it in New York, but ultimately brought it back to LA with me--a mistake though, because I didn't let go of it right away (although I told my family I did. Oops).

Last Thursday I had sort of interesting day--I was home sick but also got a bit of good news that closed a chapter of my life (in a sense), and I decided that was IT--the day I was going to set aside my Special Blanket.

Because I was extra tired, I had no trouble sleeping that night, or the next, or the rest of the weekend. Until Sunday night--when it was nearly impossible. And then last night, after being in bed for two hours and still not succumbing to my exhaustion I realized the problem was that I couldn't fall asleep without my ears being covered. I attempted to put one of the pillows over my left ear while I slept on my right side, but this just didn't work.

Finally, I gave in and accepted my fate. I am likely to sleep with that blanket until it falls apart (or until I have boyfriend/husband who burns it or something) and a day will come when I will have to put it away. But today is not that day. At 1 am this morning, I ran into my closet, dug through my bags and found my blanket. I wrapped it around my head, and fell asleep almost instantly.

I feel much better now.

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