Why Middle Age Sleep is an Oxymoron

KK: I used to be able to fall sound asleep before I could finish my prayers.  And, I would sleep soundly and deeply through the night, waking up refreshed and ready for my next day.  What happened, Sal?  Here’s what happened:

My bladder has shrunk to the size of a green pea, and now I have to tee tee at least two or three times in the middle of the night.  This entails waking up, finding my way to the bathroom in the pitch black without stumbling over a cat and making it through two doorways without hitting the door jams with my shoulder or face.

SalGal: Well, I still sleep really well.  Sorry.  I doubt that it takes a full minute for me to fall asleep every night.  I do have to get up once, usually, and walk the cat gauntlet gingerly so as not to squoosh one of them.  This is a fun game for Odessa because she lies in wait at the hall door and likes to grab my ankles with her empty, clawless feet.  It’s very disconcerting and feels like little, evil gremlins are trying to drag me away. As soon as I hit the bed again, I’m gone.

KK:  Once back in my bed, I wind up in phantasmagorical dreaming because I’ve had a nicotine patch on all day, in my 87th attempt to quit smoking.  Nicotine pulsing through my blood stream, not invited and looking for a home in one cell or another.  Evidently, at night it settles in my brain to cause disruption and fear, all in Technicolor rivaling any Hollywood epic.  I make it through,”Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the…………KaWHAMY…in come the demons, the ex-husbands, horses with claws and small children calling me Mommy!

SalGal: Now, there’s a nightmare tantamount to the one I had that I gave birth to a litter of dachshunds and presented them proudly to the Queen of England.  She was not amused even though I was very proud and even had them artfully arranged in a round basket lined with red velvet and silver lame.  The castle caught on fire and I had to drop the basket and rip off all of my clothes right there in front of Queen Elizabeth and Elton John.  Thank God it was only a hot flash.

KK:  Ha! My hot flashes wake me up at least two times each night.  This requires throwing off all the covers, lying on my back, lifting my jammy top up to my chin in the front so my chest can cool down, raising my jammy pant legs above my knees so they can breathe and not touching any part of my body at 105 degrees with any other part of my body.  The hot flash lasts approximately three minutes.  I can tell when it’s over because then I’m freezing and have to pull all covers back over my entire body including my head.

SalGal: Hahahahahaha!  That’s the perfect description!!  All boomer men should be warned that this position is not an invitation but rather a clear sign that the woman should be left to her dreaming and not be touched.

KK: To add insult to the injury of no sleep, my morning mirror shows me my pillow face.  Youngsters haven’t faced this dilemma yet.  It’s not pretty.  Because our facial skin is looser at middle age, when we sleep on one side of our faces for long periods of time, the pillow creates a fold, a chasm, a deep canyon in the cheek.  And, because the elasticity of our skin has taken a permanent vacation, this deep fold creates a vertical wrinkle that remains on our cheek until late afternoon.  Sal, you can always tell what this is, what with your snide casual remark “Oh…KK, your pillow face hasn’t gone away yet, I see.”

SalGal:  I know but I have pillow cases with eyelet edges and I went through an entire brunch at Ye Little Croissant Café before you told me my face looked like the covered part of The Phantom of the Opera’s face.  That was just wrong.

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