A lawyer runs a stop sign and gets pulled over by a sheriff. He thinks he’s smarter being a big shot lawyer from New York and has a better education than an sheriff from West Virginia. The sheriff asks for license and registration. The lawyer asks, “What for?”
The sheriff responds, “You didn’t come to a complete stop at the stop sign.”
The lawyer says, “I slowed down and no one was coming.”
“You still didn’t come to a complete stop. License and registration please,” says the sheriff impatiently.
The lawyer says, “If you can show me the legal difference between slow down and stop, I’ll give you my license and registration and you can give me the ticket. If not, you let me go and don’t give me the ticket.”
The sheriff says, “That sounds fair, please exit your vehicle.”
The lawyer steps out and the sheriff takes out his nightstick and starts beating the lawyer with it. The sheriff says, “Do you want me to stop or just slow down?”
If there is one thing that I both like and dislike about my new life after PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), I would have to say that it is the way I sleep. Before PTSD my sleeping pattern was similar to a lot of other people. I would go to bed and within ten minutes or so, I would fall asleep. There would be a few hours of really sound sleeping, but if a loud noise occurred, I would immediately wake up. In the morning when the alarm clock would chime, I would groggily arise and start my day. Unless you have insomnia, that probably sounds relatively familiar.
Well I don’t sleep like that anymore.
Without any exaggeration of the facts, I’m going to tell you exactly what happens now when I go to bed at night. I lay down on my right side, pull the covers up, and as I slip my arm under the pillow, Bella jumps up, plops her head on my pillow so that the back of it is against my face while she stretches out like a human, and then I close my eyes.
Immediately I’m asleep.
There’s absolutely not one second of wakefulness so that I can think about what has happened during the day or what my plans are for the next day. I don’t let out a long breath to relax, readjust my legs or feet, rub my eyes, or even decide if I’m hot or cold.
At that point I’m asleep and will remain asleep no matter what sounds echo in the silence of night or even morning.
Whether it is a hurricane, thunderstorms, police sirens, neighbor’s party, cats fighting outside under the window, someone knocking on the door, the alarm on the clock chiming at full volume, or the phone ringing, I do not hear anything. I sleep so soundly that it is actually scary.
I just can’t stop sleeping.
It’s like I’m dead.
So last night I went to bed and things happened just as I described them. When I finally woke up this morning, it was 6:45 a.m. and I was somewhat like a zombie. In order for me to wake up after I get out of bed, I have to take a shower, get dressed, eat breakfast, and wait for a total of three hours to pass. That’s the formula for me to arrive at being alert and awake.
That’s the routine I followed this morning, but I didn’t simply “wait” for hours to pass. Instead I was actively engaged in accomplishing one task after the next. Since I knew snow was being forecast for Richmond, Virginia, my first order of business was to cook things I would enjoy eating if I lost power during the snowstorm. I had stocked up on my fruits and vegetables yesterday thankfully because I’m sure the grocery store was a mad house today with people cleaning off the shelves before the snow arrived.
The first thing I started was my baked beans. I should have taken pictures and made a tutorial, but it didn’t even cross my mind. I’ll do it for you next time because I make the best baked beans you’ve ever eaten. The dish had to cook a long, long time in the oven, so it stayed toasty warm in my home even though the snow started falling.
While the beans cooked, I decided it was time to clean my daughter’s room because it taunts me behind the closed door. I had planned on the big cleaning last Monday, but when I opened the door, walked in and saw the emptiness and a few of her remaining belongings, I ended up in a puddle of tears. Alyssa’s grand moving adventure was still too fresh for me to cope with and so last week I left it undone.
Today I was determined to get through the emotional “empty nest” task of cleaning Alyssa’s bedroom, so I cleaned and moved boxes like the Tasmanian Devil. Once I got started with the vacuuming and then cleaning the baseboards in her room, I just couldn’t stop cleaning, so I:
- vacuumed everywhere
- cleaned all the baseboards throughout my home
- cleaned my bathroom
- rearranged the laundry room
- cleaned the washer and dryer
- washed, dried, folded and put away five loads which included a load of blankets and a load of rugs
- cleaned all the windows on the inside because it was just too cold to do the outside of the windows
- organized and cleaned the walk-in pantry/storage room
- sorted through and threw away some items that had been in storage
- kept running outside with Bella to look at the snow
- updated my Facebook WALL on my Facebook LIKE page and Facebook FRIEND page
- earned more Swagbucks
- talked on the phone to Mom and then my best friend Joan
- texted back and forth with Brittany and Alyssa
- moved many of the items for my new online store to Alyssa’s old room (I bet that surprised you. Yeah, I’m working on getting the store up and running. I’m very excited about it!)
- made two loaves of blueberry bread that are entirely grain free and the recipe will most definitely be in my cookbook
- watched the news that reported there would be at least nine inches of snow outside my window in the morning and that on Thursday the low would be MINUS SIX (yeah, that freaks me out a bit)
Now everything is clean and more organized. I am snowed in, but my home feels quite cozy, warm and happy. While bustling around today, I thought of several interesting posts that I’ll be able to do this year too. For example:
- recover a large chair that I’ll use in some of the photos for my online business with fabric that I designed and create a step-by-step tutorial of the whole process (Bet you didn’t know I designed fabric too)
- refinish a small table that I may put in the living room and create a step-by-step tutorial of the whole process
I’ve quite literally worked the whole day and late into the night, but I feel SUCH a sense of accomplishment.
Not stopping all the cleaning for many, many hours had great results.
Not stopping all the super hard and sound sleeping when there is actually a big noise is somewhat aggravating.
Not stopping at a stop sign and then taunting a police officer is just stupid.
Thank goodness I’m only guilty of two out of three!
What is the lesson learned from this long soliloquy?
“It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop.” ~ Confucius (551-479 BC), philosopher ~
People can say a lot of things and disagree with me, but everyone will agree that no matter what happens in my life, I keep on trying and I do not stop.