Freud Would Have a Field Day With This One

2010
03.23

One thing that you need to know about me if you are going to be reading my Blog is that I have some, “Sleep peculiarities” as I think we should call them.  I better explain them to you, dear Blog reader, since going forward you will be able to say, “Ah ha!  Well, naturally!  I see why she acts the way that she does.” I think it might clear up a whole lot of things about me right off.

First of all, I drool, I gasp, I laugh and above all, I talk in my sleep.  This should surprise none of the people who know and love me because, well, I talk all the time when I am not sleeping!  The only time that I don’t talk much is when I am really exhausted.  Then I go to bed and talk during my sleep.  It is a vicious cycle that I am powerless to break.

Not only do I talk in my sleep, but also I wander in my sleep.  Many people would call this sleepwalking; I would not.  I think of a sleepwalker as being unconscious of what he is doing.  In my version of sleep wandering I am slightly aware that I am walking around, but not likely to jump out on Interstate 80 like a deer bounding out of a ditch.  No, my version of wandering is like I’m just checking out the situation, making sure that all is well around the house, yet not really caring one way or the other.  It’s sort of like a more convenient form of sleepwalking, but really one that does not lead to a recuperative, restful night of sleep.

During this wandering I often work in my sleep.  For example, when I was in high school I worked at Burger King.  One night I woke up in my closet making Whoppers and chicken sandwiches.  I was slathering mayonnaise on Whoppers, squirting mustard on hamburgers and removing chicken from the Henny Penny, the warming drawer where the cooked chicken was kept.  I’m surprised that my room didn’t smell like a fast food joint as much cooking as was going on in there!

Suddenly I realized that I was in my closet in my jammies, the people who had ordered the food were not really sitting there on my bed impatiently waiting for their orders.  What a relief!   I said to myself, “Hmm!  No more special orders tonight, I might as well go back to bed!”  I did not have to worry about putting away the pickles and the lettuce due to constraints from the health department.  It just suddenly dawned on me that I was sleeping so I climbed back into bed.  See how I cope with this?

After I was a young married wife and working at a Hallmark store, I woke up one night to Mike, my husband, shaking me to my senses.   I knew that I was in our bed.  I just thought that there were some greeting cards that needed to be scanned for the customers; I could easily and efficiently do that from our bed.  The loud beeping noises that I was making as I zipped the bar codes over the scanner nestled in our blankets did not impress Mike.   “Hello?!  I’m scanning greeting cards, Mike.  Please don’t disturb my work!”

However, I did have problems when I was nursing our small infants.  I could nurse my babies for as long as needed (sometimes a feeding went on for several hours due to my delirium) but then came the dreaded burping session.  No matter what, every time I tried to pat their little baby backs in the middle of the night, I lapsed into some sort of a sleep coma only to come out just as the baby started to fall.

With one hand under their chin, the other hand resting on their back, and in one fluid movement, I would jerk that infant forward and snap his/her head back just as I woke up.  This resulted in several cases of infant whiplash, perhaps that is what is “wrong” with my children to this day: severe brain concussion as their Mama came to her senses. Anyway, they did look really precious in their baby whiplash collars, Sears Portrait Studios preserved those moments for us.  I should not have been allowed to procreate – those poor kids are suffering to this day.

My daughter, who was ill one night, called out for me, asking for me to bring her a cup of water.  (It’s a wonder that I heard her at all- read last week’s post!)  I returned to her bedroom bringing an empty, upside-down cup and asked her, “Did you change the towels?” She had no idea what I meant, but having had her head jerked a few dozen times she was well aware of my night time proclivities.  Nothing I do anymore shocks my family.

One of my favorite nighttime antics is my ability to fly in my sleep. I don’t really like to fly when I am awake, but I do it often in my dreams.  You are most probably wondering how I do it:  sometimes I just jump up in the air.  As I come down to hit the floor, I slap my feet together, kind of like kick starting a motorcycle.  Then I am up!  I can hover just over the heads and the reach of my friends.  Usually I do this when I want to get away from someone or perhaps to taunt that person, but sometimes I just want to hover for the nighttime fun of it.  Sometimes I like to show off to people how fast and high I get into the air; people are always amazed how talented that I am.  It’s a gift, it truly is.

During one really great dream I had a long stick that I used to do an acrobatics act; I flipped and spun over the stick while I flew through the air.  That was a little more ambitious than what I am normally up to at night, usually it is just the jump and hover dream.  I don’t like it when I am doing acrobatics or gymnastics in my sleep; I wake up in the morning stiff and sore and with no gold medals.  It’s not really worth it.

This probably will not come as a shock to you, seeing that you have read thus far in this Blog post, but I also have strange reoccurring dreams.  I can’t be the only one!   What do you dream about?  One of my reoccurring dreams is about dialing the telephone: I might dial 37 numbers and then the call doesn’t go through. (should you ever dial 37 numbers?)  Or, perhaps there is an emergency and I grab the phone and there is no dial tone.  In fact, sometimes I am trying to dial on an old rotary phone and the numbers are not labeled on the rotary holes.  All of this can be pretty frustrating when one is trying while sleeping to order a pizza at 3:37 a.m.

Sleeping with me can be no great joy; that is why I went out and married me a man who snores, snorts and gulps louder than me.  When we camp with our friends they all argue where to place our tent so that no one will have to hear all that nighttime chaos.  Coincidently, no raccoons or bears enter into our campsite since the sounds scare them off.  Our friends really should be grateful.

In fact, on a Girl Scout camping trip my co-leader kept waking me in the night (she was really inconveniencing and annoying me!) saying, “Kork, you’re snoring!!”  She should have been more careful with her criticisms; I might have woken up with her tied to some totem pole with a large number of Girl Scout badges and Try-Its stuffed in her mouth.  I am not responsible for folks who are foolish enough to try to wake me out of such a sleep.  Surely there is a Girl Scout badge for sleeping- like the, ‘Watch Who You Sleep With’ badge.  I think that would be appropriate, don’t you?

Anyway, I slobber, I snore, and I am pretty sure that I have an undiagnosed case of sleep apnea, but who needs one of those stupid machines to help me sleep better?  Why, if I had to drag one of those machines around with me I’d never be able to hover right above my friends, it would be…well, inconvenient and not helpful to my aerodynamics!  Who wants to schlep a big, bulky machine around with you all night?  Now THAT sounds tiring.

3 Responses to “Freud Would Have a Field Day With This One”

  1. Deb Washburn says:

    Great story and I really like the pics with it! You make me laugh all the time! Have a great week and sleep well tonight!

  2. Will Gries says:

    That picture is hilarious!

  3. Korky Gries says:

    Yes, look at his hand hanging there, Will! You can tell he’s three sheets to the wind!

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