My Christmas gift from the corporation's catalogue last year was a white noise machine. (This year I've chosen a small, high-quality food processor.) It has six settings: thunder, ocean, brook, summer night, rain, and white noise. I've been using the machine fairly regularly for the past three weeks, because it muffles the murmurs of Middlest and Fourthborn when they are up all night gaming. They are careful to speak and laugh quietly, but after nearly 40 years of motherhood, I have ears like a bat. So I dusted off the machine and put it to work.
I've been leery of using the pseudo-water-based settings because of suggestible kidneys. The point of running the white noise machine is to help me sleep through the night, not to wake up at dark-thirty needing relief. I can do that on my own. So my setting of choice has been thunder, because it is more boom and crackle than drip drip drip. I turn it on a few minutes before I climb into bed, when I'm washing my face and brushing my teeth, as a cue that lights-out will be happening shortly. Most of the time it works like a charm.
I was knitting knitting knitting last night, trying to finish the gusset decreases before bedtime. My eyelids grew heavy, so I put my knitting away and went through my routine. Put on the chinstrap, eye mask, and harness. Turned on the CPAP, rolled into bed, and turned off the light. (So glad that I sprung for the chain pull extensions when we got Middlest's.) Lay down. Closed my eyes. Brain decided to yammer at me. I grew more and more awake. After twenty minutes to half an hour, I threw off the covers, sat up, turned on the light, and freed my face.
Down the hall I went, nearly colliding with Middlest, for a healthy snack. Knitted four more rounds. Put my knitting up again, switched to the rain setting, and tried again. Noticed that the rain setting sounds a lot like bacon frying. Hoped it would not make me hungrier. Rinsed my mouth, plugged myself back in, and feel asleep.
I've only used the rain setting two or three times, and while it's nearly as good as thunder for lulling me to sleep, apparently it does weird things to my subconscious. I think I've written that when I was married to the children's father, I bought him two environmental cassette tapes that could be played on endless loop: one of a city rainstorm, and another (my personal favorite) of a country rainstorm, complete with baa-ing sheep. Those went with him in the divorce.
The last two times I've used the rain setting, I've dreamed that I was still married to him or that life was otherwise falling apart. A week or so ago we were fighting (which we didn't do) and duking it out (which we definitely didn't do), and I was trying to take the kids and leave before he killed me (not in his character). Last night was one of those work/school dreams, in which I couldn't consistently find the room where I was supposed to be, and I was wandering around a neighborhood, and people from different stages of my life were making cameo appearances. Very disorienting, and I'm still feeling a little spacey.
So here I am, typing away when I'd rather be asleep, and I need to be at church, alert and prepared, in a smidgen less than two hours. I just caught myself dozing off, bolt upright, notwithstanding a high-protein breakfast. All of which suggests to me that I'm going to learn something, or connect more dots, when I get to church, and that the Adversary is fully vested in my zoning out or coming home early.
Not gonna happen. Heading back for a catnap with the alarm set.
On this fifteenth anniversary of 9-11, God bless America.
And Ms. Ravelled, and those she loves, and those who love her. And all who stand for truth and righteousness, no matter how they understand our Maker.
- Four years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!