Sunday, August 4, 2013

Night Watch

Here I'm starting a post at 1:15 AM. Yes, my classical music is providing a lovely acoustic backdrop, and I can hear crickets outside my window...but given my usual busy Sunday pace, I have no business being up now.

I've struggled with periodic bouts of insomnia since I was a teenager. Now I attribute it to my arthritis, and the last few days have been particularly challenging. Not being one who is fond of staring at the ceiling, I may as well get up do something productive, and pray that blessed weariness will overtake me soon. I've read various articles that speak of insomnia being a common occurrence among us "oldsters," and sometimes when I check in with my Facebook/high school pals at this time of night, it is a theme that binds us.

Pain aside, I think I'm getting accustomed to what has come to be called a "new normal." I've already regained much of the mobility in my knee, so I've decided to give up the use of my temporary handicapped parking placard about two months early. It's a deliberate gesture of hope and confidence that I've finally regained my stride. The physical therapy, despite my high copay, has proved to be a sound investment.

Insomnia also seems to help me come up with ideas that, in the frenzy of daytime, would not occur to me. With the rest of the house quiet, I can let my mind wander without waiting for Mom to call out and have my creative flow interrupted. Making my to-do list for later on, or having flashes of insights about complex treatment plans, are wonderful benefits of such stolen bits of time.

A feeling of acceptance is coming over me. Without sounding nauseatingly Pollyanna-ish, I have a strong sense of confidence that my second half of life will be successful, that my legacy will be one that does my bit of the world some good. Tony Bennett turned 87 yesterday, and still has a career in full swing. That should be the case with me in 31 years.

Nighttime is also good for exploring all things nostalgic. Somehow, in the past couple of hours, I began reflecting on things that came to be comforting touchstones of my childhood -- the Reader's Digest that was always on the coffee table, for example. What articles I used to devour in those compact little issues, and still think of today.

Well, the Ultram finally seems to be doing its job, so I'm going to reacquaint myself with the mattress. 'Night, all.

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Carlos by Carlos Santana

Something appropos from the Beatles:


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