A very long time ago - probably about 20 years ago - I discovered that if I fell asleep with the T.V. on, it helped me sleep better. Instead of having to listen in the dark silence to my mind remind me of all the tragedies of my life, whatever story was on captured my mind instead, allowing me to slip quickly into sleep.
I have been plagued with a disturbed sleep pattern for most of my life - waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to go back to sleep. My mind woke me up with many terrible thoughts - fears, painful memories, grief. When I woke up and the T.V. was on, whatever was on immediately grabbed my attention and wiped out the crazy thinking.
If I watched for awhile, I almost immediately got sleepy again and fell back to sleep.
Of course, anyone in their right mind would think I was crazy to sleep with the television on. I have heard many folks chastising me for doing it. I don't even bother to defend myself, because I realize it still won't make sense to them.
I still hope that all my relaxation methods, guided visualizations, meditation, mantras and affirmations will allow me to sleep without the television. I'm not going to give up because that would be preferable.
I've progressed now, to leaving the television on to a recorded program to go to sleep. I'm recording programs that might be soothing to sleep to. When the recording ends, I usually continue to sleep.
Progress, not perfection.
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