Sleep: Day 4

Last night, I was prepared to be up until midnight or so, finishing up problem sets that I should have started working on much earlier than I actually did.

(Note: Midnight probably doesn’t sound late, but I usually call it a night around 10 PM. I wake up at around 6 AM, and I need actual amounts of sleep in order to be functional throughout the day.)

It was a pleasant surprise then, when I had finished most of my work by 10:30 PM. Yes, I had a few more things that I could have finished up last night, but their deadlines weren’t imminent, so I decided to hold off in favor of a good night’s sleep. I changed into my sleepwear, brushed my teeth, and hopped into bed, sleeping soundly through the night until my alarm went off the next morning.

Or, that was what was supposed to happen. In reality, I was able to accomplish everything except that last part about actually sleeping. In bed at 11 PM, I didn’t truly fall asleep until at least 2 AM, and it was restless sleep at best. I spent most of the three hours staring at the ceiling, trying to convince my heart rate to come down (it was at around 110 bpm) and my brain to stop working so hard. I tried to figure out why I was having so much trouble falling asleep. Yes, I had a cup of coffee (my fourth one that day) at 9:30 PM, but that was a frequent occurrence, and it had never affected my ability to fall asleep soon afterwards. Was I stressed? Yes, but no more than usual. In fact, I had just completed several assignments that had been stressing me out all week, so I was probably more relaxed usual.

Whatever it was, it was frustrating on a level that I rarely encounter in life. I was fighting against my body, and my body didn’t seem to want to listen. I woke up this morning exhausted, and have spent most of today feeling the same. In order to prevent the same thing from happening tonight, I’m going to the gym again this evening to tire out my body right before I go to bed, and I will not be taking any naps today. Fingers crossed.

Have you ever experienced this? Do you know what caused it? As always, thoughts and comments are welcome.

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