Do you have insomnia? It stinks, doesn’t it? I am wide awake so often in the middle of the night, I have developed some coping mechanisms. Of course, I am going to share them with you, because they might come in handy some time in a wee hour when you are manically alert.
- Imagine you are rich. What would you buy? I can while away many a wide awake hour deciding what kind of little apartment I would get in New York. I decorate it, make sure it has a nice big terrace where my cats can wander around, and I think about how pretty it would be to spend Christmas there. Of course, it would snow, and I would have three fireplaces. A brownstone or a fifth floor walkup? Decisions, decisions.
- I count how many times my husband snorts, and contemplate punching him in the shoulder. This often happens, but after the punch, he stops, and I am once again left to my own devices.
- I think about what my next novel will be about. Or I plan a blog post. This often involves actually getting up and going downstairs to the computer, so I try not to do this very often. Of course, my new novel is about ready to come out. Once that happens, I will probably go downstairs more often. I wonder if Hemingway did this. Then I laugh heartily at myself for even putting myself in the same thought sequence with Hemingway, for God’s sake.
- I worry. This is counterproductive, but it happens. What if Ebola comes to Dayton? What if I forget to baby-proof something, and when my grandson comes for Christmas, he swallows a Q-tip? What if I get shingles, even though I had the vaccination? What if I forget to cancel my insurance when I start getting Medicare? What if all the Polar Bears go extinct because the ice caps are melting? Fraught.
- I imagine what it would be like to be an adventurer. I see documentaries about women who travel to exotic places and learn exciting things. They go on photo safaris and drift down the Amazon. Then I remember that I can’t swim, and that jungles are rife with bugs. Ugh. Oh, yes, and I am unable to go number two in a public bathroom, so doing it in a trench in the jungle would be impossible. I then think of my perfect vacation: staying in a lovely room in London or Paris, and eating foreign carbohydrates.
- I try to decide what kind of dog breed I would get if I ever got another dog. This can burn up a lot of midnight oil. Poodles? Doodles? Cute and smart, but too big. Dachshund? They can be bossy? A shelter dog? Probably. Then I ruminate about dog names. This is really fun. Finbar? Dudley? Al? Sardine?
When all of this fails, I just try to doze off. This usually works after a while. Then I have vivid dreams about living in New York with my Corgipoo Dudley, walking down the street to meet my grandson and his mother in a smart bistro. When I get there, he has a Q-tip up his nose, and we have to rush him to the doctor, who is a Polar bear with a big bug on his nose. And I have to go number two, but in a restroom? Nightmare!