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It is very seldom that I talk to my daughters about their husbands and certainly not about their habits, etc., but the other day I was fervently discussing my inability to get to sleep at night and Malcolm’s weird (or so I thought) ability to lay down, close his eyes and go to sleep within seconds! And what surprised me was when Adrienne said, “Oh my gosh, that sounds just like Mike! He is asleep and snoring before I even have my feet under the covers!” I had thought that Malcolm was the only one who could pull that off, but after discussing this aberration with a number of other women, it would appear that many, many men are exactly the same way. And women? Of course not!
Now, let me explain just what I am talking about. First, I am not talking about Malc going to bed, lying down, fidgeting around a little, and finally getting comfortable and then slowing drifting off to sleep. Oh, no, what I mean is that he lays down on his back, folds his arms, closes his eyes and immediately is sound asleep. What I want to know is, how is this humanly possible?
I go to bed, lie down, turn from one side to the other, close my eyes, open my eyes, pound my pillow and when I am finally comfortable, wake right up! And then I make every attempt to go to sleep. I try emptying my mind of any worrisome thoughts, I think about good things that have happened over the day, I think about my children and grandchildren. I make sure that whatever thoughts I have are good, peaceful and happy ones. And I am still not asleep.
I think that in actual fact, it takes me anywhere from an hour to several hours to finally get to sleep and many times, I wake up again during the night and begin the whole process over again. And Malc? He is still in the very same position he was when he first lay down and he is still sound asleep! Many times with a cat asleep on his chest. And I must confess to you that many times when I am still awake and trying to relax and go to sleep, it crosses my mind to smack him awake and pretend that it wasn’t me! Oh, and I have to tell you that many, many nights, after I have finally gone to sleep, I wake up with horrendous cramps in my feet and legs. And I must share with you that when I am doubled over with these cramps, Malc is still peacefully asleep and he never hears my agony, unless I scream his name and throw things at him… which is almost never. I am truly a kind and considerate wife!
After confessing how difficult it is for me to sleep and how impossible it is for me to watch Malcolm, I think that it is interesting to note that it appears to be a “man thing” and not just a “Malcolm thing.” I haven’t heard one woman say how easy it is for her to go to sleep. Nope, most women admit that they, too, are unable to go right to sleep and that they agonize as they try to find dreamland every night. I have no idea why this should be. It can’t be that women worry more than men because I really don’t think that is true. I am sure that many men who have very stressful jobs worry just as much as women do, but they seem to be able to compartmentalize their worries and these worries don’t affect their sleep. Now, I also want to say that I no longer have small children or a full household to worry about. Nor do I really think about or worry about the problems of the world, at least not at night. In fact, I have no idea what occupies my thoughts as I try to go to sleep. I do know that I worry enough during the day that even I think that night time is for sleep, not trying to figure out how to solve the world’s problems. And my children and my grandchildren are happy and content enough that I no longer have to worry about them, so what is it that keeps me awake?
So, here is sort of what I think. I think that women are just predisposed to tossing and turning before they finally fall asleep. It is a very lucky woman who can join her male acquaintances and fall immediately to sleep. And I think that the less I worry about it, the better I will, ultimately, be. And men are men (!) and they are just made to fall asleep when and where they want to. Not that many women can fall immediately asleep in a chair with the TV on full blast, in their car, sitting on the sidewalk and leaning on a cement wall, or while playing with the baby. When was the last time you saw a woman slumped in her chair, with her mouth open and a small string of drool hanging from her chin as she happily snored? Never, right?
So, relax and don’t worry about how long it takes you to fall asleep. I am just guessing but I assume that, like me, you will eventually go to sleep. And the more you worry about it the longer it will take! Even if you have small children to get off to school, once they are gone you can hop back in bed and enjoy the other end of the sleep spectrum! And remember, who will ever know?
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