A Day In the Life

12:01 amI need to get some sleep, I thought. A small part of me wondered if sleep was going to happen. My “night-owl self” tried to talk me out of trying. “What’s the point? You’re only going to lie there in the dark, thinking about how you need to get some sleep. And you won’t. At least if you stay up, you’ll be productive.” I hated her sometimes; I didn’t need her encouragement {or was it discouragement?}. No, I thought. I’m not going to allow her to keep me up all night. That’s what she wants…and then she’s the first to complain about it when I’m tired. I reached for my mouse and shut down my PC, determined to begin the process.

1:01 am – “What’s the point of shutting off your computer if you’re only going to play games on your iPad?” “night-owl self” asked. Oh shut upI thought, trying to justify it. Just one more level, I’ll put the iPad down and sleep.

1:30 am – …and four levels later: Shit!  With a deep sigh, I closed the cover and put the iPad on my nightstand before turning off my lamp. There. I did it.

2:30 am – Did I even sleep? I wondered. I must have because I don’t remember the hour passing. “Night-owl self” said, “How is it possible you don’t even know if you slept? Besides, you’re going to see every hour. Why not get up and do something productive?” I steeled myself. Because sleep is productive. I’ll drop off again soon. You just watch.

5:01 am – Arrrrrgh…why can’t I stay asleep?  “Morning-hater self” said, Great. We’re going to be tired all day because night-owl tried to convince you to stay up. Can’t we just go back to sleep?” I glanced at the clock. Two hours. I felt torn. Would 2 hours more make me feel any better or any more tired? “Who cares?!’ “morning-hater self” said, ‘We’ll deal with it in two hours. Jeez!” Fine, I’ll chance itI thought, rolling over and closing my eyes.

8:30 am – Shit! I overslept!  I bolted upright, cursing myself for being too tired to hear my alarm. How could I not hear that? It was pretty dang loud. Then I wondered what was wrong with me. I should be glad I got three and a half more hours of sleep! “Morning-hater self” said, “Damn right! Stop complaining! It should be illegal to be up before eight, anyway.” 

10:01 am – In my bedroom, I grabbed my notebook and did a quick assessment in the mirror. I was wearing my comfy jeans and an aqua shirt. “Less-than-confident self” said, “Dayum…you sure you don’t wanna put some makeup on? You still have time.” I resisted. No. I’m comfortable the way I am. Anyone who has a problem with it will just have to understand and get over it.

 11:01 am – I looked around the parking lot of the café ~ quiet, which meant a great chance I’d get my favorite table. A car pulled in next to me; I made eye contact with the driver and she glared at me! Huh? I was just about to smile at her. I shook my head and brushed it off. Whatever!  I grabbed my purse, phone and notebook and made my way into the café. There were customers at the counter so I sat down at my table and waited my turn. Ordering my coffee, I turned around to find “The Glarer” behind me. This time, she looked me up and down before glaring at me again. Wow…someone clearly needs her caffeine more than I do, I thought, shaking my head again. 

11:25 am – Iced coffee ~ delicious; notebook ~ open to a blank page; pen ~ out; phone ~ on the table next to me; earphones ~ plugged in; me ~ happy, situated, ready to work. “Morning-Hater self” quieted down, appeased by the caffeination. “Less-than-confident self” quieted down, appeased by the positive effect being in this café had on my creativity. “Night-owl self” was most likely storing up the energy for another night ahead. “Analytical self” was quietly in the background still trying to understand why “The Glarer” did what she did. Here I was, in my favorite place, doing what I love the most and happy to be here. I would never know her reasons for glaring at me the way she did, but I had to wonder what it really accomplished other than the attempt to make a complete stranger uncomfortable. Did she succeed with me? No. The problem was hers, not mine. With a shrug, I carried on with what I came to do.

1:00 pm – I’ve written 10 pages in my notebook and my coffee’s halfway gone. “Creative self” is happy because the words are flowing. I feel so blessed that I can do this and that it fits in with my purpose in this world. I don’t even care that my hand is getting tired from writing; I power on because I don’t want the time here to end. Somewhere in between filling the pages, I answer messages and texts from friends, giving my writing hand a much needed break.

2:00 pm – Twenty-five pages is a new record for one writing session at the café. My hand’s about to fall off, but I still don’t care. What’s left of my coffee has been diluted with the water from the melted ice, rendering it undrinkable. “Coffee-loving self” is now egging me on, “Get another one! You know you want to.”  I’m sorely tempted, but I really don’t need another large dose of caffeine. Seeing noise and smelling colors isn’t how I want to spend my evening.

3:30 pm – Home for all of 45 minutes, I’m now at my PC, transcribing what I’ve written and regretting not getting that second coffee because now I’m sleepy and I need to wake up to get this done. “Reasonable self” pipes up that I should get to bed early and that it serves me right for being tired. Cranky from lack of sleep, I think, Who asked you anyway? Shut the hell up.

4:45 pm – I’ve collapsed on my bed after setting my alarm for 6:00 pm, reasoning that my grandmother lived to be 100 because she took a nap every day and I was just following her example “out of respect”. My reasons for needing a nap are not important. As soon as I doze off, the weird dreams ensue. Are weird dreams another side-effect of sleep deprivation, mixed with a vivid imagination and copious amounts of caffeine? Possibly.

7:00 pm  – I don’t even acknowledge that I slept longer than I should have. After several minutes spent contemplating the dreams I had during my nap, I’m convinced I’m doomed to a life in a padded cell. I then head for the kitchen to see what I feel like eating for dinner. Pasta it is. And cheese. Okay, it’s mac and cheese. “Pasta” sounds more “gourmet”, but whatever. I like mac and cheese. It’s comfort food made easy and so reasonably priced, too. The perfect food for those of us who are too tired to slave over a hot stove all day.

9:00 pm – Transcribing finished, I’m done writing for the day. All I want to do is relax and surf the web for a while. I know it won’t be long before “night-owl self” shows up. I vow to be ready for her tonight. Messages from various people pop up on my screen. I type back to them and go back to Pinterest for a while. Scroll through my Facebook feed while exchanging more messages…and omg, I find a video that makes me laugh until my stomach is hurting. My son comes over to see what I’m laughing at. We spend several minutes more laughing because I have to replay the video for him, which makes me laugh even harder. Thank goodness for laughter.

11:00 pm “Didn’t you say you were going to bed early tonight?” “reasonable-self” reminds me. I hate “reasonable self” as much as I hate “night-owl self” but for different reasons. “Reasonable self” is like the angel on my right shoulder, in charge of the “shoulds” and “night-owl self” is her demon counterpart on my left shoulder, in charge of the “should-nots”…and she knows she’s winning. What I believe I said is ‘Shut the hell up.’  I say I’m going to bed early every night. Doesn’t mean I will. Reasonable-self” said, “Pity. You’d get so much more done.”  I sigh in exasperation. Yeah, yeah. My eye catches something funny on Facebook and more laughter drowns out the voice of “reasonable self”, leaving “night-owl self” looking smug.

12:00 am – Before I realize what I’m doing, I reach for the mouse and power the PC off. “Night-owl self” said, “W-what are you doing? It’s only midnight. Night-owls don’t go to bed at midnight.” Ignore. “What?” “night-owl self” said, “Not talking to me tonight then?” Ignore. I’m determined.

12:15 am – Night time routine finished. I work through the temptation to pick up the iPad after setting my alarm. The games would have to wait. Off goes the lamp. Get comfy. Feeling proud. “Reasonable self” said, “I can’t believe it. You did it. How does it feel?” I’m smiling in the darkness. “Like tomorrow’s going to be more productive. The night-owl can’t win all the time. Girl’s gotta sleep.”  “Reasonable self” said, “You may just catch up on all of your work.” I was feeling more relaxed. “Well…maybe not all at once…but it’s a start.” 

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13 thoughts on “A Day In the Life

  1. Kia ora Carol, just wanted to say I loved it! Can so relate to all your different ‘self’s’ especially coffee, reasonable and night-owl. I liked the layout, easy to ready, and good use of formatting; italic combined with normal, interesting use of bold words (not sure I liked them though). A tip I’ve started to do is to not look at the iPad or Facebook at least 30 minutes before sleep, soothing music is better 🙂 I look forward to reading more. Happy blogging! Samantha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Samantha!

      Thank you so much for dropping by and posting a comment.

      I’m pleased to hear that you could relate to my post; I always try to write about relatable things.

      At first I wasn’t sure about the formatting because I wanted to differentiate between who was saying/thinking what. I’m glad to know it was easy to read.

      I am trying to get out of the habit of being on the PC or iPad before bed. I think it’s something I’m going to work harder at doing.

      Thanks again for stopping by; I have followed your blog and look forward to reading more from you. 🙂

      {Hugs}

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That was such a great read! Your presentation is fabulous and I loved the way your conversation emerged with all those different aspects of ‘self’. Do you think ‘night-owl self’ is as much fed by the melatonin suppression that screen-viewing is said to cause as by the motivation to write during those quiet times of night hours? Thanks for sharing your link (w101) I enjoyed your post and it certainly is ‘relatable’ 🙂 Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Colette!

      Thank you for your kind comments. You’re right about the joy of writing during the quiet night hours. That’s always one of the reasons I enjoy staying up ~ my creativity peaks then.

      I also do it because I can. After years of being in an abusive situation, I was under someone’s control and couldn’t do things freely. So part of it is for the sheer freedom of being able to do it without having to worry about the repercussions.

      I’m so glad you stopped by. {Hugs}

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m quite similar. Late night writing though somehow extends and screen use during late hours doesn’t help sleep 🙂 I’ll drop by again, it really was a fantastic read – I was glad to find your link:) Thanks for sharing, hope you have a good day 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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