Tuesday, January 10, 2012

How to Beat Insomnia, Part 2

Continuing from yesterday's post about how I learned to get to sleep.

Problem 5: Rug rats and being a living killing machine.
After having kids and having to wear pajamas again (my boys tend to like punching me in the testicles when they see them), I had a harder time getting to sleep.  I remembered how an old girlfriend asked me to put my hand between her knees so they wouldn’t touch while she was sleeping and started putting an extra pillow there.
And I know what you’re thinking, perverts. You try starting something with a hand that has fallen asleep from being squished between two bony knees all night.
Later, my wife bought sound-generating machines for all the bedrooms, so we could walk past our children’s rooms while they slept without them screaming “Are you there?  Are you doing something fun?  Can I come out now?”  On a whim, she got one for our room, too, and we began going to sleep to the sound of ocean waves.  This solved another problem I had: that of my action-hero nature.  As the alpha male of my household, I was instantly alert to any sounds of intrusion in our home.  The slightest sound made me jump out of bed in a karate-action pose.  Then it’d take two hours for me to get back to sleep.

Problem solved.

Solution: Sound machine.
 I took this in my bathroom mirror. Honest.
Problem 6: My arm rested too heavily on my body.  When you have enormous biceps, like me, they weigh on you.  And my armpits felt strange.  Having run out of pillows I could reasonably claim as a straight male, I rediscovered an old friend.
My decapitated panda head from when I was a child.
Solution: Kill a panda and stick him under your arm.
Is it crowded in here or is it my giant biceps?
Problem 7: Cats.  We all know how irritating they can be when we’re awake, but when we’re asleep, they cause the most trouble.  Cats sleep all day long just so they can lick themselves loudly next to your ear or attack each other on top of your bed.  We used to lock the cats in the garage, but relented when the heat went off.

Solution: Kill the cats.  No, just kidding.  My wife gave me her extra pillow to put over my head.

So, here’s my sleeping preparation checklist.  I have to follow it every night to make sure I can get to sleep.
  1. Put on pajamas and brush teeth.
  2. Get in bed.
  3. Pile up pillows behind back
  4. Turn on sound machine.
  5. Read to wife until she snores.
  6. Put book away.
  7. Put Pillow 1 between knees.
  8. Pull covers over body.
  9. Put decapitated panda under arm.
  10. Place head between two pillows.
See! What could be simpler?

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