Most nights I wake up at least once. About half of the time I can take care of whatever business I need to and go right back to sleep. However, on the other nights I'm not so lucky. I go to bed and slumber for four solid hours, then wake up and spend the rest of the night drifting in and out of consciousness until the alarm goes off.
I blame the annoying insomnia nights on my crazy middle-aged hormones. Sometimes I have to go to the bathroom. Sometimes I wake up because I'm hot, or I'm cold because I kicked off the blankets when I got hot. Sometimes there's a combination of issues. Whatever the reason, it's very irritating to lie awake in the wee hours of the morning and think about trying to get back to sleep.
I try all sorts of tricks to relax my mind. Sometimes they work. If they don't I turn on the radio next to the bed, which is set to our local NPR station. Overnight they switch to programming by the BBC World Service. I start to listen to the soothing British voices, which eventually lull me back to slumberland.
However, until I get back to sleep I'm usually learning random things. For example, after last night I'm pretty confident I know more about the current elections in India and the fighting in South Sudan than the vast majority of people who live in the Midwestern section of the United States of America.
Five years ago today: Data Detective