What happens when your head hits the pillow? I think there is something in mine that sends signals to my brain.
The first is fear. Why is everything so scary at night? I can go to bed completely worry-free and then the second the light turns off I convince myself a serial killer is on the loose. Or that twinge I just felt? Cancer. Maybe a heart attack and potentially Lou Gehrig’s disease. Could my husband be in an accident? Could my kids have been abducted while I was washing my face? What if the house burns down? Or a tree falls into my bedroom window? Or I wake up and I am 16 and none of this has happened and I have to go through it all again.
The second is genius. There are some nights I hit the hay and the second I close my eyes, I have an idea for the Great American Novel. I am like John Steinbeck and JK Rowling wrapped into one amazing package. I write the entire first chapter in my head and wake up with no memory. I may solve a huge problem I have been struggling with and it is gone as soon as I roll over. Or I come up with a brilliant idea for work. The kind that will create more homes for kids, more donation dollars, more jobs, and then a kid yells “I can’t sleep!” and the idea has vanished.
The final is memory. I forget everything great, but I remember everything I forgot to do. The report I forgot to add crucial info to before I turned it in. The laundry that is still in the washing machine. The signature on a child’s paper. Calling someone back, paying a bill, arranging a babysitter. I forgot milk at the grocery store and did not shut the garage door and I did not get the paperwork ready for my appointment first thing in the morning.
But 2 hours ago, when I was bored on my couch? I was afraid of nothing, stared at an empty computer screen waiting for the idea to come and hear the beep on the washer and think, I’ll get up in a second to switch that laundry.
Ideally, I should write down my ideas and keep a list by my bed, but realistically there is not one thing that get me out of the bed. Somehow, I have to figure out how to live my life in a semi-sleep state during the day so I can take care of everything and go to sleep with a sound mind. But the only way I will figure out how to do that is when I am half asleep and we both know I will not remember it in the morning.