Day 13: Tuck Yourself In

The moon has a grip on me.

Oh, the power of the moon to sway the oceans, control the ebb and flow of the tides. How can it not have power over us, when a human body is 75 percent water?

Just ask anyone who works in a hospital. A full moon can fill the emergency rooms with the mentally and physically wounded. Labor and delivery room overflow with new babies.

Still doubtful? Rent the movie “Moonstruck” and you’ll snap out of it. 

For the past two weeks, I’ve been getting to bed early as part of my Mothering Me plan. At 10 p.m., my cell phone sends gentle harp music to remind me to start shutting down my life for the day. I sign off the computer, turn off the phone, brush, floss and tuck myself in. 

I spoon a little with my hubby, give thanks to the Creator for another wonderful day, then close my eyes.

And they’re still open at midnight.

And at 1 a.m.
And 2 a.m.
And 3 a.m.
And, no way! It’s 4 a.m.?! 

Yep. Two nights this week. Wide awake all night. My mind is exhausted, but energy is running through me like a power plant. I fall asleep to the birds chirping to wake the world.

In the past when I couldn’t sleep, I would get out of bed at 1 a.m. and get things done. Write a column. Clean a room. Answer emails. Outline projects. This time, I did what a good mother would do with a child who can’t sleep: I tucked myself back into bed.

No flogging.
No beating myself up for being wide awake.
No forcing myself to fill the time to achieve something worthwhile and useful.
No scaring myself with anxiety over how tired I will be in the morning.

I simply tuck myself in. Refill the cup of water by my bedside. Fluff the pillow. Smooth out the sheet. Say goodnight. Feel the cool of the sheets. Hear the tick tock of the clock. Listen to the train whistle far off.

Then I catch myself smiling. I feel like a child playing hooky from school. The whole world is asleep and I get to be up. Maybe the moon is lonely. Maybe the stars need to know they are twinkling for somebody.  

Instead of fighting to get back to sleep, I tell myself:

Just be one with the mystery of the moon.
Just be a companion to the stars.
Just rest in the dark, and shine.