January 30, 2006 4:51 PM- truth, lies, sans videotape

Last night I took a sleeping pill. Not a frequent habit, but I always have a box of the cheap, generic, over-the-counter tablets on hand. I?m rather religious about sleep; if there?s any chance I may have missed the last train out of the nocturnal station, I pop one of those blue babies to ward off the demons.

I never called them the demons in fact I had no name for those dark thoughts that creep in if you?re still conscious in the middle of the night. It was my sister-in-law, while she was undergoing radical treatment for breast cancer who coined the term for me.

My sister-in-law is a nurse, so while we were talking about how things were going during her cancer treatment I asked her if the nurses were nicer to her cause she was of their tribe. That?s when she said, ?um, not really but it does help to have them here at 2 a.m. when the demons come in.?

Color me surprised. My sister-in-law is the most together person you have ever met. Forget about the sparkle of her floor, you could eat off the top of her refrigerator when she has been on holiday for two weeks. The word immaculate comes to mind.

So I was taken aback when she mentioned regular visitations from the demons. And yes, they predated the cancer, so it wasn?t just the horror of chemo that was bringing them in. In the course of our conversation we established that somehow we are most susceptible to those dank, world-is-ending visions in the hours between midnight and 3 am. That is, if you are lying in bed trying to fall asleep. If, during those said same hours you are drinking tequila and dancing on tabletops surfside?by all means, carry on.

All of which is to say, once I became aware that this phenomena was not limited to me, I began taking measures to never allow the demons airtime. Hence, the ever ready supply of blue pills in my cosmetic case.

Why could I not sleep last night? Alas, I am molting. Molting! Some kind of deep change is afoot and I?m in the in-between stage and it?s confusing, awkward, ugly and uncomfortable.

There?s a recurring image going around in my brain: Admiral James Stockdale?s shining moment during the 1992 Presidential debates when he said, ?who am I and why am I here?? Over and over.

I know, I know. It?s all part of what I signed on for with the Artist?s Way, n?est-ce pas?

But it doesn?t feel good. I feel lost, unmoored.

So that?s the truth portion of our show today.

Oh, and the fact that I wasn?t able to completely resist reading a few blogs today. Mea Culpa. I hope to do better tomorrow, but in my defense I can say I read them really, really fast.

As for the lies? I feel like they are a part of me like weft in the warp. And that?s what?s going on?I am unraveling to get all the lies ripped from the fabric which means, I?m left with threads, no cloth.

Naked as a jaybird. I imagine that was Ms. Cameron?s goal, but I can?t say I?m enjoying it. Not this week.

So, in summation, this week I am lost, naked, and suffering from amnesia. Sounds like a pilot for an eighties television series, non?

got 2 cents?

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ozma says:
Don't take this as flirting but I'll bet you look good naked! Oh, God you want TRUTH? No wonder you fear the demons. I shudder just thinking about but maybe I'll be brave like that someday.
posted on: January 31

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Swirly says:
You have such a wonderful way of injecting humor into otherwise serious topics. I love this. And I love the word "molting". That's a keeper.
posted on: January 31

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lizardek says:
either that, or a Bill Murray movie. It doesn't come to stay, BP, it comes to pass.
posted on: January 31

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teahouseblossom says:
I feel your pain about the insomnia. Right now I'm jet lagged and can't sleep! Worst combination in the world.
posted on: January 31

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Katherine says:
sounds like 'lost and unmoored' means that your ship is in the water and sailing off for parts . . . . unknown :) adventures in the high seas . . . naked . . . not a bad thing depending on your take . . . naked is usually about being embarassed about what others think of our floppy bits, and if you are lost and naked and at sea, it sounds as if naked could be a wonderful thing, i.e. skinny dipping, etc., as long as you have SPF50 so as to avoid burnt bits. I salute your voyage. In fact, i shall buy a very, very large bottle of saki and toast to you many, many times :)
posted on: January 31

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saltwater princess says:
molting. What an amazing way to describe the process. I love it! I hope the demons let you get some rest. And I bet if someone said they didn't have demons, they'd be lying. Hugs and comfort to you!
posted on: January 31

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bad penguin says:
"at 2 a.m. when the demons come in" describes it perfectly. Perfectly! I have my own stash of little blue pills. As for the molting, change is hard, particularly when you're in that floundering around stage. I've been struggling with the Stockdale question myself, lately, and it is not an easy question to answer.
posted on: January 31

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maria says:
Ugh ... I've been molting for at least 23 years now ... is there anything left? Talk about naked. I was awake from 2:30-5:30 last night ... this is a regular occurrence for me many nights. I've tried the blue over-the-counter pills, but they leave me with such a foggy 'hangover' in the morning, and it feels like it takes til the evening to shake it off ... so, I just try to make friends with the demons ... I get a lot of creative ideas at those time, too. Well, at least they *seem* creative at the time ... not so much in the light of day sometimes, but once in a while there's a keeper. :-)
posted on: January 31

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samantha says:
After having seasons of sleeplessness myself, I am amazed that these days? I sleep like a dead woman. Unless I have a bad dream - the other night I woke up in the wee hours and it was so disconcerting. I used to pop Benadryl back in my no-sleep days, it was terrible. I was a mess. Here's hoping that plenty of good sleep is coming to you soon. And that you'll battle those demons full on, with angels by your side.
posted on: January 31

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impossiblejane says:
I too suffer from the demons. Only I have bad dreams and wake up singing songs in my head over and over and over again so that I'm not able to fall back asleep. I think the song singing is a way to forget the demons.
posted on: January 31

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Blearyeyedlove says:
I, too, cannot always sleep through the night. Peaceful slumber is disturbed - to change diapers - new parenthood will do that to you.
posted on: January 31

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Neil says:
I had never heard of this "Blogging the Artist's Way" until a couple of weeks ago, when I saw the purple box on your site linking to them. Their site intrigued me, but I was a little afraid of ever participating, mainly because all the talk of "going deeper" made me uncomfortable. Is it a male thing? I was going to email you to ask you some questions on how this approach was inspiring you, but maybe I should wait until the nightmares end! Talk about scaring me off! Is this what happens when you explore yourself too deeply?
posted on: January 31

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Clairey says:
Although painful for you experiencing it, from the outside I am very excited to learn of your molting! In the sense of 'ooh yes it's working!' This whole blogging the artists way thing has inspired me to start doing morning pages again which I find so useful but so easy to slip out of the habit. So thank you for that and acquesiesce to the molting I say!
posted on: February 01

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