Warning! Stream of consciousness, lightly edited sharing ahead.
Good morning! Just for the heck of it, I thought I’d share my first journal entry for this morning.
PER/HERE AND NOW —
July 11, 2020
Okay. So this is today. This is how it begins. At not quite 3 am, I woke up and found myself unable to go back to sleep. The palms of my hands were itching like crazy. That was one thing. Needing to piddle was another. At least that I could do something about. Did. Came back to bed. Discovered that the water reservoir on my CPAP was nearly dry and that that was the reason I had been hearing my own breath all night. Phil, on the other side of the hospital bed rail that divides our sleeping arrangement, was, for the moment, actually not making a lot of noise with his breathing. I had laid awake from 10:15 to 11:15, last night, playing a word game on my cell phone, listening to the sounds of his inhalations and exhalations. Finally, after that hour, I was exhausted enough to not notice them. Or maybe he had changed position and was literally breathing easier.
So, at 3:30, I got up, filled my CPAP reservoir with distilled water (a jug of which I keep conveniently on my bedside table) and returned to trying to sleep. I mean, I was willing to act like a rational person.
After spending an hour back in bed, still struggling with itchy palms and the fact that with even just the sheet over me, I was feeling just a bit too warm and without it, I was just a bit too cold, I gave up trying to sleep. I perched my readers on top of my CPAP mask and turned on my cell. It opened up to where I had left it, with the word game. For a couple of moments, I was tempted to mess with it some more, but the Truth reminded me that would really be a waste of the precious time I have between now and when, a hour or two from now, I begin to get that weird, half nauseated feeling of brain-dead exhaustion that happens to my nearly 72 year old body when I get less than 4 hours of sleep.
So, I closed the word game and opened up Kindle and found the first book in my library was The Autobiographer’s Handbook, (Traig and Eggers). I had downloaded a sample of it several days ago when I was in one of my obsessive searches for the magic pathway to fulfilling my soul’s purpose—to leave a record of my life story.
Okay. I’ll go with it. What’s obsessive about waking up after less than 4 hours sleep at my age and reading yet another book about writing my life story.
So, I open the digital book and begin to read. And here’s what the Truth said to me in the first paragraph of the Introduction by Dave Eggers:
“You should write your story [Colleen] because you will someday die, and without your story on paper, most of it will be forgotten.” (1)
So, here I am, now, at 5:05 am, at my desk, sharing today’s story, stream of consciousness style, with my computer. My other option would be to share my story with my hardbound, handwritten journal, but with no logical reason, coming here and using the keyboard felt better, right, workable, doable.
I’m not using the keyboard with any expectation that anyone else will read what I’m recording about this morning.
But then, maybe I should or could up it out there. Maybe if I would, someone else who’s unable to sleep at this hour and this stage of life (facing the reality that your life is nearly over and that either physical or mental demise is looming in the not too distant future) might find this journal entry reassuring you that at least you still have a “tribe.”
Tic-toc goes the clock. We’re all in this together.
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