Saturday, May 8, 2010

Wide Awake by Patricia Morrisroe

I didn't like this one as much as I thought I would, not sure why. What I did like was all the research and collected wisdom about sleep related issues under one title. I recognized some of the studies from past magazine and newspaper articles and was glad to catch up on the newest information.

But . . .

It was hard to read Ms Morrisroe's personal sleep struggles without passing judgment. I have sleep issues of my own and just resolved myself to the fact that I am wake-full at night and sleepy during the day. I stopped resisting this years ago because the fight was just making me miserable and in the end it didn't change a thing. A few hours of sleep here and there over the course of the night is normal for me, as is my eye color and height. I had to agree with this quote on page 156:

"Until very recently, most anthropologists avoided sleep as a research subject, leaving it to scientists to determine what 'normal' is."

And then on page 157:

"Matthew Wolf-Meyer, an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz, focused his dissertation on sleep and capitalism, and like McKenna, he believes that sleep science has left no room for variations. "The explosion of interest in sleep has led to more drug and mattress advertising, which leads people to think more about symptoms than about causes . . . "

Indeed, sleep is a tricky, personal, and emotional subject.


Susan Abramson said...

Thanks, you made me feel better about my sleep issues as well, and I too just lie in bed awake most nights for some time, just relaxed knowing it will pass and I'll fall asleep again at some point. I used to fight it and it only caused me to be irritated and take longer to get back to sleep.
Thanks, as always, for your wisdom. :)

trish said...

It's amazing how many people (especially women, especially our age) don't have the textbook 8 hours of uninterrupted restful and satisfying sleep every night. We just get what we get so why not make the best of it. I do some of my best pondering and problem-solving in the middle of the night. And it's a great time for reading without distractions!

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