Tag Archives: life

Adventures of Short Sleeping: I Sincerely Want This to Stay

Welcome back to my Short Sleep Cycle Adventures!

As of typing this it is almost 1700EST and I feel really good. Last night (this morning, I suppose) was my second night at a 4 hour sleep schedule and so far, it’s working great! The best thing that I’ve noticed so far is that everything feels like it’s slowed down for me. I’m not rushing to beat a clock and I am able to take on more work WHILE having more time to follow my hobbies, such as this blog.

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Filed under Personal Life, Sleeping

Super Human Powers? The Adventures of Short Sleeping

It’s no secret to people that know me that sleep and I are tentative acquaintances at the very best. Sleep and I don’t quite get along, she lets me hang out, but really just enough to get by. I’m tired of it, so I made an appointment to get myself into a sleep clinic.

For full disclosure, I’ve been diagnosed with clinical depression, slight anti-social disorder, and have had a history of alcohol abuse. All of these conditions are well managed and by all accounts I have an excellent life. I do work too much, but day-to-day stresses are not that big in my list of things to worry about. In fact, I don’t spend much time worrying about anything these days.

I do drink coffee and tea, but low to no caffeine. I probably drink 1 to 3 fully caffeinated drinks a day, if that. I don’t eat a lot of sugar, I don’t eat right before bed, I work out on a regular basis. I’m a healthy person by almost all standards.

I suppose that’s why my inability to sleep more than 2 hours at a time is starting to grate on me. I’m busy. If I honestly don’t need 8 hours of sleep and instead can do something else and spend more time awake and doing things, I’m going to do it. Here’s what my NORMAL sleep pattern looks like:

11:30pm Went to bed

1:00am Woke up – Showered, watch a video, had a pint of water, refilled water glass

2:40am Went to bed

2:53am Got up – Drank 1/3 pint of water

2:56am Went to bed

3:56am Woke up – Drank 1/3 pint of water

3:57am Went to bed

5:10am Woke up – Finished water, refilled water glass

5:20am Went to bed

7:00am Alarm woke up – reset alarm

7:10am Alarm woke up – reset alarm

7:20am Alarm Got up for the day – Had more water [Late to work]

When I discussed this with my sleep doctor, he was fairly quick to assess that I may have what’s known as Shorted Sleep Cycle. ″What’s that?″ I asked. ″It basically means that you only need 4 to 5 hours of sleep a night″ he replies.

″That’s a THING?″

I think that perhaps my enthusiasm shocked him. He nodded, however, and said ″it’s exceptionally rare, but yes, it’s a thing″.

Short Sleepers are people (about 1% of the general population) that function best on half of a regular sleep cycle. If I truly am a member of this mutant club, it means that I only need 4-5 hours of sleep a night. Getting more than that won’t hurt me, but I don’t need it. My body isn’t really having trouble falling asleep, it’s just not wanting to sleep that long.

This excites me! As I am typing this, I’m quite content at 1:30am. I feel like this may be a THING I can do! I got extra things done for my second job! I’m productive!! So, we’ll see if I actually sleep a full 4 hours straight, or if this is going to be a bust. Regardless, I’ll take you all along for the ride. See you guys tomorrow, where I will update what Short Sleeping really is, tell you about how I handled my first day on the 4 hour schedule, and talk a bit about my lack of jet-lag.

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I′m Not ″one of the Guys″


I′ve been debating this post for a while now, not because anything happened, just because I randomly think about it and then let it go. The whole ″one of the guys″ thing has bothered me for a while, for reasons I really couldn′t quite put into words. That was, until this morning after a conversation with my fiancée.

We′re discussing the future as all betrothed couples eventually do. She′s going to be graduating soon and is currently looking for work. I, on the other side of the coin, am established in a job. Thankfully for both of us, I could drop one job and make a passable living at writing OR she could perhaps work remotely. We′re going to make this work, we just have to figure out what parts of my puzzle fit properly with hers.

However, the idea of dropping my established job makes my chest seize up unexpectedly. It isn′t that I′m working in a gay-friendly environment. In truth the HR department turns up the professionalism to about 9000 when I mention partner benefits or my marriage. I′m in the closet because I am legitimately worried about losing my job over my sexuality. What I have found isn′t a place where the company itself is that worthwhile. Instead, I′ve found a team that I belong on.

I′m the only lady in the biomed shop as a technician. I′m a damn good technician and I work closely with everyone else on my team. They accept my pink hair, my tattoos, and well, like R said yesterday at E′s retirement lunch: ″We′re techs, everyone of us is quirky″.

It hit me with those words that I′m not one of the guys to them. I′m me. I′m Lily. To them, Lily isn′t the token girl or a dude. I′m a person. A person that they may not always understand or agree with, but a person just the same. This is the acceptance I′ve found in my friends and I′d much, MUCH rather be Lily than something I′m not. I′m not a guy.

I think that′s what bothered me all this time about that phrase. Being ″one of the guys″ often means hiding individuality. It requires, in part, sacrificing things that make you who you are in exchange for fitting the appropriate ″uniform″ of culture. This means that you′re not supposed to call out things that bother you, that you′re supposed to just accept certain things. I′m not going to do that anymore.

While I′m sure it′s made me abrasive to some, and certainly I know people dislike me. However, what it hasn′t lost me? Is real friends. Instead I have found that the people I love are still right alongside me. Because they are there for me, not for any role I play.


Filed under Year of the Protagonist

Maybe it’s Never Really Over: a Relaxed Divorce

Ex called me a while back. I didn’t tell him that I was moving… I didn’t really think to.

I’ve passed the point where hearing his voice makes me roll in my gut. That hideous little snake of depression and anxiety that he always brought up has died. I can feel it rotting away sometimes when I think about how hard I tried to be straight and how it has obviously affected him. It’s his little slips that catch me biting my tongue, calling me “babe” out of that 15 year habit is one of them.

I can’t bring myself to be angry with him, not anymore. He’s screwed us both over in a multitude of ways, mine are mostly monetary aches that I just have to keep paying monthly till they fade away like my guilt snake.

I want to be angry with him. I want to ask why I lost all of my friends over this. I want to ask how it feels to be “right” because he’s the straight one. I want to be angry so badly but I don’t have it in me anymore. It feels like it would be easier to be angry than to admit that he’s never going to truly go away. The fact of the matter is that I’m always going to care for him. I’m always going to remember him. I am always going to hope the best for him.

But I don’t feel responsible for his future anymore. And you know what? I think that’s how it’s supposed to be.

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Year of the Protagonist: New Lives

Oh, this has been a whirlwind two months, my blogfriends. I moved from the hell hole, I’m not getting my deposit back because I left some things there (but I did leave the place MUCH CLEANER than I got it). My ladyfriend moved in with me for the summer and she helped me move. It’s been really interesting, we sniped at each other a bit, but there was no major blow up and we’re almost all settled in.

Our new place is small. Extremely so, but it’s very nice. We’re slowly getting down to purging and unpacking things, the closet, a pile, and some shelves need to happen but we’ve definitely slowed down. My goal is to set up three more shelves today and put things on them. It’s real cozy and I love it here.

Ladyfriend can walk to work and I am only 8 minutes away by car. It’s really nice to be so … I dunno, close to everything. I can walk everywhere that I want to and I am enjoying the sort of relaxed freelance kinda feeling. Speaking of Freelance, I’m doing very well with the freelance job. So well, in fact, I am planning to be out of debt entirely in six years.

After that…maybe I’ll quit my main gig. I sort of daydream about having the freedom to go wherever I want whenever I want to go. Freelance is freedom for me. Once my debts are all paid up I am really not that expensive a person. Little apartment, enough food and time with my dogs is all I need.

It’s an odd thing to have choices. Lady Luck is smiling upon me. I’m not an expressly spiritual person, but I feel like something is looking out and that as long as I keep myself open, good things will come my way. Optimism is a nice thing to wear. 

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Year of the Protagonist: A Skeptic’s Darkness

I’ve never professed to be a spiritual person. I think it is because of how close I’ve been to death on a personal level. This isn’t to say that I don’t believe in some form of the ‘other’ but I don’t suppose that I give it its due, so to speak. Once you’ve accepted the fact that you are going to die before you’ve reached ten, there isn’t anything mystical about it. I’ve made peace with my mortality and I don’t know why, but it leaves me firmly in a skeptical landscape.

You’d be amazed to know that I’m friends with an Alchemist, Pagans, a Magician, and a Cloudwalker… but then again, respect is what makes friendships, not mindless agreement.

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A Man Who Makes You Smile

We’ve all heard this idea that’s been tossed around about marriage or hetero partnerships.  The most common “tip” for a long marriage is the man saying that he knows how to make her smile. Not “we can communicate openly” or “being honest” instead it sounds like all he has to do is placate his woman and she’ll shut up. Now, I don’t deny that smiling and being able to lift your partner’s spirits is important in a relationship. It is. However, when does it stop being about making her smile and start being OBLIGATING her to smile?

This was always a point of unease and contention when I was married. I would feel overwhelmed or upset and my ex would do or say something silly. It wouldn’t help the situation at all, and instead of trying to fix or talk about what upset me, he would then become hurt and say “I was trying to make you smile” or “I just wanted to hear you laugh”. In the end, the result was that he felt like he’d done his part to make me feel better without doing anything but make me feel guilty on top of overwhelmed. I don’t want to say that he never worked or tried to lessen my load, however he had this idea that if I just smiled everything would go away.

That’s not how life works. “We’ll find a way” or “just smile” doesn’t really -do- anything.  Smiling is all well and good, but it isn’t the only emotion that I’m allowed to have as a woman. I’m allowed to be annoyed, things that upset me are not imaginary and they deserve attention. By giving me this mandate to smile then ignore what is bothering me because someone else told me to just makes me feel ill inside. I don’t owe anyone a smile. I smile when I mean it. Obligating me to do that just invalidates my emotions in general for someone else’s benefit.

I can’t help but wonder, when I hear this canned advise tossed about, who else feels this way. How many other people smile in front of clenched teeth with nothing but the added stress of pleasing someone else on top of whatever was bothering them in the first place. For me, emotions in general are hard to genuinely show and have. The fact that I’ve been OBLIGATED to fake happy so much and for so long hasn’t helped me at all.  Here’s the thing about relationships, no one is always happy.

It’s one of the things that I really love about my current relationship. I don’t feel like I have to hold my emotions close to my chest and smile. If I’m upset I can say “This upsets me, here is why” if L is upset, she can say “I don’t like this, here is why”. We argue, we disagree, we set out plans to fix our problems. The “difficult” things are what you’re supposed to deal with in a relationship. It adds, for me, this huge security to the entity that is “us”. I know that nothing I can do would immediately push her away. I know that we can talk about problems and confront them. I am not living with the fear that if I’m not smiling enough she will walk away. The ability to discuss and communicate our problems is so much more important to me than being able to make her smile. Because now, when she smiles, I know she means it.

And when I smile, I do too.


Filed under Personal Life, Year of the Protagonist