Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Cure for Sleeplessness?

It takes me a long time to fall asleep at night. There are nights where I will lay in bed wide awake, tossing and turning, unable to relax for 3 hours. It usually doesn't matter how tired I am - I hardly ever fall asleep before 12:30 or 1 in the morning.

I have been adjusting to a new schedule which requires me to get up before 7 AM a few days a week to teach labs... and not falling asleep until 1 in the morning means that this girl that likes 8+ hours of sleep a night only gets about 5. Let's just leave it at I'm not a morning person... for most of the morning.

Last night was one of those nights. I was exhausted. Yet, I rolled around trying to get comfortable for hours. I got up and moved to the futon. I grabbed another blanket. I got a drink of water. I checked my e-mail (twice). Nothing was putting me to sleep. So I'm lying there thinking, "God, can you just help me relax so I can get some sleep, please?" and a thought pops into my head - "You should see who the patron saint of sleeplessness is." So I got up, checked my e-mail (again), and typed "patron saint of sleeplessness" into Google. Upon some further looking, I discovered St. Peter Damian, who himself suffered from chronic insomnia. In the information I found, it said that he was often so eager to pray that he slept very little and began to suffer from chronic insomnia. From this, he learned he needed to use some prudence in taking care of himself, but insomnia was something with which he struggled.

So my tired brain just said a quick - "St. Peter Damian, pray for me so I can get some sleep!"

I don't remember walking back to my bed and hunkering down under the covers, but I did. And I was knocked out. I woke up with my alarm out of a deep sleep, which could have only been granted by intense drugs or the will of God.

So I think St. Peter Damian might become my new friend on those nights where I have trouble falling asleep. I am going to continue trying this out, asking St. Peter Damian for his intercession, and see if this helps me sleep better. If it does, I might look up more information on the patron saint of back pain (St. Gemma Galgani), the patron saint of strange dreams (which always occur when I am knocked out in a deep sleep), and the patron saint of winning a bajillion dollars (to give to the poor, of course).

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