BLOGSOMNIA

Dara LevanBlog19 Comments

Blogsomnia. The frustrating, infuriating, persistent force that flips a switch in my brain. The one that’s supposed to be in the off position at 3 a.m. Yea. You know. As y’all are—hopefully—in a deep sleep (like the rest of my family), I am writing. Blogsomnia won the middle of the night war.

At first I blamed the dark chocolate that somehow made its way into my mouth at 10 p.m. I have no idea how this happened! All I remember is I was suddenly thirsty from the homemade fondue on my tongue. Perhaps it was the healthy, 80 percent dark decadence that triggered the neurons in my brain to fire like a pinball machine? I figured (a bit too late) there must be caffeine in those little mischievous morsels that I regret eating.

Or maybe it was the four cups of water I drank as I watched “Parenthood” I laughed, sobbed, and laughed again as my husband sat to the right on the couch. Poor guy. We were trying to watch this first episode together. I felt the characters’ pain as if it were my own. I didn’t want to disrupt this amazing show so I sniffed quietly. Judging from the mix of concern and confusion on my husband’s face, I wasn’t quite inaudible. This was my theory at about midnight.

However, after a few hours of contemplating life, obsessing on blog names, and creating topics in my head, I decided my hypothesis was incorrect. It wasn’t the chocolate nor the large amount of liquid consumption. It was BLOGSOMNIA. Yes. I created this word. When? You guessed it! While I tried desperately to will my body to sleep.

The deep breathing, counting backward, and visualizing a tranquil river didn’t work. (Side note: The water visual actually kept me awake. You can imagine why.). I tossed. I turned. I tried my stomach. Nope. I tried my side. I was still wired. I lowered the air conditioner, which was already on 66 degrees. Apparently Blogsomnia caused my brain to boil, which radiated to the rest of my body. I normally would be shivering at such a low temperature. The circuit breaker in my head, which on an a typical day (or night!) is generally cooperative, seemed to be malfunctioning.

Blogsomnia has intruded on my usually peaceful slumber for weeks now. Her evil twin sister, Twitch, has conspired as well. She likes to instigate during the day. I know many of you can relate. Twitch moves around my physical body. She sometimes shows up on my right eye lid. Oh yes. She’ll appear at THE most inappropriate times!

I was at a lunch meeting recently. I was sitting directly across from a passionate person who was discussing her goals for a particular organization. She wanted to “pick my brain,” which on a typical day I earnestly welcome. Suddenly the right quadrant of her face seemed to jump. I realize this is not logical. So I shifted my gaze casually to the fork on my plate. Interesting. The fork was dancing, too. Oh my gosh no! Who invited you, Twitch, to lunch?! Of course after I notice this inconsistent but persistent movement, I am totally distracted. I silently thanked my summer camp teachers at Interlochen for the theater training as I worked hard to focus only on the conversation.

Much like Blogsomnia, Twitch is stubborn, single minded, and unrelenting. And Twitch is a wanderer. The following week, she apparently got bored hanging out on my right eye lid. Twitch, without asking my permission (last time I checked this is MY body), decided to move to my right arm. Oh no, not just my upper bicep or my shoulder. Twitch settled herself in the crease of my forearm. Yes. The area I frequently use for necessary daily activities such as brushing my teeth, eating, driving, and much more.

It was annoying. It was bizarre. And Twitch was unbearably hyperactive; it was as if she’d quickly consumed 10 cappuccinos. I could visibly see my skin pulsing. I looked at it incredulously. Was this MY arm attached to MY body? This continued for a few days. I keenly observed my arm. (This did not require much effort; Twitch randomly interrupted every movement I made.). I even asked my kids if they saw what I saw. Yes. They certainly did, and they found it more entertaining than me!

After researching this phenomenon, I read that sleep deprivation or caffeine can fuel and feed Twitch. Terrific. I wasn’t sleeping well (thank you, Blogsomnia). So of course I had more caffeine than my normal one cup a day. This was a necessity so I could adult and take care of my family. My mind has awoken from a few decades of hibernation. Like the metal caps throughout the streets of New York City, my lid had blown off and ideas were spraying everywhere. Blogsomnia had a rockin’ party in my head all night. Twitch took over when the sun rose and inhabited various, random body parts during the day. What on earth was I to do?

Write. Sit down at the computer and let it go. Write from my soul. I had to get out of my own way, which is something I so frequently say to my creative, perfectionistic daughter. I needed to not only listen to my own advice but actually do it. As I let my feelings flow and trickle through my finger tips, that cursor moved rapidly across the screen. Words became sentences. Sentences joined others and the party moved from my soul to the page. Twitch thankfully left the next day. I continued to have my morning java, and even sometimes an extra espresso in the afternoon. But Twitch did not return.

My body was telling me what my heart and mind already knew. Years of feelings, thoughts, experiences, memories, and more yearned to move on. Blogsomnia still stops by unannounced, which is admittedly a bit exhausting and at times frustrating. But today I decided not to fight back but join her instead. I stumbled out of bed in the dark at 4:30 a.m. to write this blog.

Blogsomnia has been a coach in the wee hours of the morning. I watched the sun slowly rise as yellow and orange hues welcomed the day. The soft, spreading light gently glowed behind the trees. Birds chirped and formed a chorus of sopranos as they flew in the sky. The sunrise and songs mirrored my own awakening—my return to self and my spirit. What sometimes begins as a pest, if you are open to changing your perspective, can become a positive force.

19 Comments on “BLOGSOMNIA”

  1. Email me if you can’t sleep! Not daily…but I have creative bursts of energy in the middle of the night too, especially when I am on deadline! If I’m up, will email you back! On days like these you need a late afternoon nap but amazed what you have done by noon! Keep sending the blogs! ❤️D

    1. Ahhhh yes! Thank you, Dana!! I guess we haven’t changed much since our creative brainstorming days at IU!!!!! Love and appreciate you reading. xoxo

  2. My ‘twitch’ manifests himself in the bags under my eyes. So annoying and I feel as though it’s noticeable to anyone who stands before me. Great to see you last week! XOXO

  3. Somehow missed last week’s and was eagerly looking forward to this. As always you didn’t disappoint. We’re still way overdue for tea or lunch or both.
    Much love. M

    1. Thank you from my heart. And yes…we are LONG overdue like two expired library books! Let’s do something about this!! xo

  4. Great post Dara – I can completely relate! My mind and body aren’t always in sync when it’s time for bed. And Twitch made me laugh because I’ve been there too. Your writing is so relatable, fun and creative. I look forward to reading it every week! ?

  5. Thanks for sharing sister!! I’m not so sure it wasn’t the chocolate 😉 Though I do like the word “Blogsomnia!” The twitching has happened to me on my eye–I’m hoping it may just be an overdose of caffeine. Since I rarely drink coffee, I’ll have to see if that triggers it!! Love YOU!

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