Sleeping Beauty

Any new parent knows that the phrase “sleeping like a baby” is an oxymoron.

I spend a lot of my time being tired.  Maybe it’s all the anger.  That takes a toll you know.  But working 50+ hours a week, driving a teenager back and forth to cheerleading practice, figuring out what to make for dinner (okay, figuring out what to order at the drive-thru), doing the laundry and keeping track of everyone’s schedule is exhausting.  So you would think that come bedtime I would fall into my comfy bed and drift off to a peaceful, albeit all too short, night’s sleep.  Nope!

My friend Missy and I were discussing sleep issues the day after Daylight Savings Time ended.  She was complaining that she didn’t get to take advantage of her extra hour of sleep.  Missy has been flirting with menopause for some time and it appears they now have a full-fledged relationship.  So she’s awakened every night to drenched sheets and pajamas.  Fun.

I don’t usually have a problem sleeping through the night, but I have difficulty falling asleep.  As soon as I lie down and my body tries to rest, my mind sparks to life.  It’s as if my brain thinks that now is the perfect time to run through everything I might not have had a chance to think about all day.

So when I get into bed, my brain does something like this:  “Did I send that email to George about the new sign package?  No, I need to do that tomorrow.  I need to call Mom.  When’s the last time I talked to Mom?  I miss Mom’s fried chicken.  What are we going to have for supper tomorrow night?  Is there some chicken in the freezer?  You know what I haven’t seen in a while?  That episode of Friends where Monica had the really big hair and played ping-pong like a ninja…..” and on, and on and on.

Could you sleep with this in your head?

So I need something to help me sleep but I don’t like to take “sleeping pills”.  Just the name of them conjures up images of overweight, has-been movie stars with droopy eyelids in a movie on Lifetime.  I go for the “natural” remedy of melatonin.  If you think of sleep like a child’s slide, once I get a gentle shove at the top I glide effortlessly down to the bottom until time to get up.  So Missy was asking if I had a “natural” suggestion for her issues.  As it turns out I did.  I told her, “Get thee to a doctor!”  Sometimes real prescription meds are warranted and to me some of those reasons are sinus infection, labor and delivery and menopause!  I doubt Elvis’s problem originated from the meds he took to prevent night sweats.


One of the reasons I take a natural remedy is to avoid getting addicted.  Otherwise I wouldn’t be so opposed to “sleeping well on the wings” of something.  So imagine my surprise when I visited my local GNC to purchase another bottle of my natural melatonin and the guy at the counter told me to be careful because if I took it too often I wouldn’t be able to go to sleep without it.  Um, isn’t that the definition of addicted?  Of course this same unemployed fitness trainer expert told me that taking three “Zap it Fat” pills a day would solve my overeating issues so I’ll take his advice with a grain of salt.

Does anybody else out there have trouble sleeping?  Are you like me and can’t fall asleep or are you like Missy and wake up and can’t get back to sleep?  What do you do?