Several years ago I read an autobiography of Queen Elizabeth I where she describes sleepless nights as her white nights. I've come to accept that term to describe my own sleepless nights instead of the popular all nighter.
When we were younger, all nighters were just part of the partying culture that we grew up in. Now that I'm older, partying has nothing to do with it. I start off sleeping...nodding off around 9...but I usually wake up around midnight or 1:00 and I'm fresh and perky. (No more sleep for me!)
This used to happen once or twice a year usually around spring and fall with the dreaded time change. I called these my "reset" days...re-adjusting to the shift in time.
My white nights now happen at least once or twice a month. I used to cranky about them ("freaking hormones!") but I've tried lately to embrace them. Use these white nights to get some me time.
I looked up white nights on wikipedia and they state that many cities have White Night Festivals, usually art festivals that go throughout the night. In northern climates white nights describe the "all night sun" of summer. Having experienced that in Alaska a few years ago, I can understand the almost euphoric feeling that you get from an all night sun. A reason to celebrate!
But in the dead of winter a white night means I need some other kind of distraction.
This past Saturday night I went to bed at 10 and was up by 1:30 fresh as a daisy. I put myself to work with the seed catalogs (researching, selecting and ordering) drew up my plans for the garden, buzzed through your blogs and wrote some of my own.
The next thing I know it's 6am and everybody's up.
"You up all night?" SM inquires.
"Yep...got a lot done too." Me
(SM wanders away in search of coffee shaking his head. He always worries about my sleepless nights.)
"It's no big deal honey...they just happen. It's hormones and getting older."
"Why don't you take a sleeping pill?" (SM takes pills for everything. Me? I'm a pill-a-phobe. I avoid pill unless I absolutely have too.)
"They make me feel sluggish. Look at me! Lots of energy!" Me
"Well, maybe you'll take a nap later." SM
By 10am I'm starting to feel it. But I don't want to crawl back in bed.
"You know, Bern (SM's sister) left a Diet Mountain Dew in the fridge." SM points out.
(Ooooo...Diet Mountain Dew and I were best friends for the past 20 years. I had to give it up this summer with my tummy problems.)
"No...I'm not supposed to drink caffeine or soda. It'll flare my heartburn." I replied.
An hour later SM walks into the kitchen and sees me chugging away.
"Gave in, Huh? SM
"This is sooo good." Me
"You should see your face..." SM
"Remind me of how happy I am right now in a few hours when my heartburn kicks in." Me
"How about a Tums chaser?" SM
"Bleah...and ruin a perfectly good moment?"