Once upon a time, I struggled with SLEEP! It wasn’t falling asleep, or staying asleep, it was my relationship to sleep. For years, decades of my life, from teen years on up…
My relationship to sleep was indifferent. I didn’t have a close relationship nor a love relationship with sleep. I did enjoy sleep, when I got it, it was just surrendering and going to bed that was my issue. I felt I could do fine without it. Why sleep when there were so many other things I could be doing with that time? That’s how I justified it. I don’t remember saying ‘I’d sleep when I’m dead’, but I’d heard that one before.
I worked hard and played hard and schooled hard-just didn’t sleep hard. Well, I slept hard, just not a lot. I really think I believed I was getting more out of life by skipping a full 8 hours of sleep per night. Maybe I did?
Throughout high school, I went to school during the day, went to work till late night, and then did homework & socialized after that. I slept a few hours before a new day started. Weekends-I may just skip an entire night of sleep and go straight to work from partying.
That was the beginning of a life long habit.
I was lucky to always have been healthy and chose healthier options in other areas. (like nutrition, self motivation & self healing through personal growth & mindset seminars, retreats, and workshops.)
The only health concerns I’d have would be stress related, anger related, and PMS related. I never connected that with lack of quality sleep.
Becoming a mother, just added in my relationship to sleep. I could forego sleep for my babies, and on up through the teenage years. Waiting up for them was no problem for me, while my husband slept easily.
Which really came in handy during my 3rd and last labor and delivery at home. This was a long one, that lasted more than two days. After the midwives left each night, and everyone else went to bed, and looking over at my husband sleeping, while I laid there with contractions every few minutes, it helped in those moments to be able to stay up all night
I hadn’t realized the effects lack of sleep had on me over the years. All my years of studying health and healing, I still didn’t connect the dots. My mental health could’ve probably been in a lot healthier state, as well as my stress management skills, and now I see how the relationship to my sleep and hormones were connected and could’ve saved all those around me (especially my husband) so much stress, pain, and anguish. (myself included!)
I just thought PMS was a feminine curse and the way it was. I had no one to guide me and teach me how important good, quality and consistent sleep effected so much I was dealing with. I hadn’t made the connection of balanced hormones and sleep. Stress management and sleep. Clarity and a better mental disposition and sleep.
I didn’t realize SLEEP could’ve been my MAGIC PILL, all those years. That simple!
I thought I was cheating the system and getting bonus time in life. I now realize it’s not the quantity-it’s about the quality. WOW!!!!
It took me over 30 years to figure this one out. Once I figured it out, it still wasn’t my “magic pill”!!!???
Why couldn’t I just SLEEP now? Why couldn’t I reach my goal of getting to bed before midnight at least 5 times a week? I still could have 2 ‘free’ days a week. Not that easy!
Alongside my personal health coach, (yes, health coaches have coaches, too! We believe in the power of support! and accountability), I discovered it had become more than just sleep. Other than it being a lifelong habit, and having to break through that cycle, there was a deeper level to fold back and uncover.
Now it was prioritizing my self worth. Making ME a priority in all of this.
I’d heard the stewardess advise me to put on my oxygen mask first. Good thing I was never challenged with being in that situation…
Luckily I’m getting this lesson just in time for my next chapter in my life, to help balance my hormones for my journey through menopause when it comes.
Although everyone around me has been toughened up through the years from my past torture—now we can get through this together and with more awareness.
The other benefits of me getting my fair share of good, quality and consistent sleep, is that I have more energy to exercise now, and makes weight loss easier, and my mental state of mind is more balanced and it’s easier to stay more even-tempered throughout the ups and downs of family life, with a good night’s sleep behind me. The benefits are endless and I am so thankful I finally got this one!! I still have days of struggle and that is just a good mirror for me to look at setting boundaries for myself with myself and with others, as well.
The beauty in life is truly the lessons keep on coming to help keep this journey interesting and challenging and exciting!!
Sweet dreams…….and to ALL a goodnight!!!