Right about now, I wish I were a cat. I look at my cat, who hops on the bed and curls up on the pillow next to mine and is asleep the moment she lays her little head down. Meanwhile, I am still tossing and turning, wide awake.
I’ve learned a few lessons from a lifetime of difficulty getting to sleep.
I know that at night every worry and fear gets magnified beyond any reasonable doubt. The normal worries of finding the right person turn into “I’ll never get married and will die alone.” The normal anxieties of career transition turn into “I won’t ever get a job because there’s nothing I’m good at.”
The trick is to recognize these lies for what they are and to realize that you don’t think as clearly when you’re tired. That’s why it’s always a good idea to put in a good night’s sleep before you make a major decision that will drastically affect your life.
I don’t have any answers to how to overcome the inability to sleep. He says as he is typing this at 12:40 am.
I know in the past, I’ve used the time to pray over what’s troubling me that won’t let me sleep. Sometimes, I get up and try to find some mindless TV to help relax me. I’ve even gone old school and tried warm milk (though it doesn’t work too well when you overheat the milk and burn your mouth).
I think in a way it’s a good thing I can’t sleep sometimes. It helps me realize that sleep is not a given or an entitlement. It is a gift from God, just like every other good thing in life. So maybe instead of counting sheep, count your blessings instead (as the old song says). Instead of looking at what you’re missing out on, look at all you have.