I haven’t been able to sleep the past two nights. I don’t know why. I get to bed by 10:00pm and then lie awake. I’m tired, but I just can’t seem to fall asleep and if I do fall asleep, I’m not staying asleep. I have a chiming clock downstairs, and for the past few nights I’ve counted out the 12 chimes at midnight. And the single chime at 1am. And the three chimes at 3am. I finally fall asleep, only to be woken up by my alarm around 5:30am. This just isn’t cutting it for me. I haven’t changed my schedule or habits (still no caffeine after 3pm, and yes, Mom, I’m eating a good dinner). I just don’t get why I can’t sleep.
There are a myriad of possible reasons that I can think of, none of which satisfy me as “the” reason for my insomnia. A combination of the possible reasons doesn’t particularly satisfy me either. [And no, the wedding R.S.V.P. is not a possible reason, I’m not that stressed about it. Really.]
The past few weeks I’ve been trying to catch up from being gone for NASIG while simultaneously trying to prepare for ALA Annual which begins this coming Friday. This was a lost battle from the beginning. It may have finally caught up with me. And then there’s the various projects I’m heading up, trying to nail jello to a tree/wall (otherwise known as getting a group to focus on a task for longer than 30 seconds), reports to write, my normal work, etc. But I’m not any busier than anyone else I know. Yes, work is stressful, but I’m not thinking about it lying there in the dark. I’m not thinking about much of anything at 3am besides the fact that I’m tired.
It could be because I’m traveling. Travel usually stresses me out quite a bit, I admit. Especially flying. I have very bad luck with security. For the vast majority (80 percent or more) of flights I’ve taken since 2001, I been wanded in security or had my bag looked through. Even when I don’t set anything off magically I’m “randomly selected” for extra screening (random my ass!). So flying stresses me out because I know in advance I have to allow extra time for that “selected” extra screening in security. But ALA Annual is in Washington, D.C. So I’m not flying this time. I can take the train, a relatively painless experience. My friends, this option of taking the train instead of flying is one of the joys of living on the East Coast for me. I’m actually looking forward to it.
But then there’s the unavoidable “mother guilt” of having to leave my dog at a kennel while I’m gone. I know she does fine (fortunately not much fazes my dog), and I know she has a good time, but I still hate having to leave her. Frankly, I hate being separated from her, period. But it usually doesn’t keep me from sleeping, especially with her snoring quietly beside me. I find her snoring comforting and it usually lulls me to sleep.
It could be ALA Annual. I leave on Thursday. My schedule is, per usual, packed. I have committee meetings, informational sessions, operations meetings for groups I belong to, etc., and somehow I’m trying to squeeze in time to see colleagues and friends from across the U.S. I have several days in a row that begin at 8am and don’t end until 8pm. Multiple 12 hour days. Over a weekend. Which means I come back from the insanity and go immediately back to work without a break. So yes, I’m a bit stressed about it. This conference stress is the most likely culprit keeping me awake, but again, I’m not consciously thinking about it at 3am, and conference stress hasn’t caused insomnia in the past for me.
It could be the weather. It’s finally behaving like summer, which means it’s a bit warm. But not uncomfortably so. I have a fan in my bedroom window. No, I haven’t put in my window A/C unit yet, but it hasn’t really been uncomfortably hot. Once the sun goes down the temperature drops and my bedroom comfortably cools down into somewhere in the upper 60s or low 70s Fahrenheit. Perfect for sleeping in my world. I’m not doing anything different than I have previous years and it’s never affected my sleep before. Really, I have no problem sleeping in the middle of summer in Australia with no A/C when it’s in the upper 30s/low 40s Celsius (that’s upper 90s/low 100s Fahrenheit). Heat just doesn’t faze me all that much. Must be those southern roots from my grandmother. So I don’t think it’s the weather.
Sigh…Ultimately I don’t care why I can’t sleep. I just want to get some sleep, dammit!