Friday, March 10, 2006

Tight Rope Walking In My Dreams

When I hear stories from my friends with babies, and how the babies wake them up at all hours of the night, my standard response is, "Oh my god, I could never do that!" I can't imagine having my sacred 8 hours of sleep interrupted every 2 hours by some little creature crying and reaching for my breasts. However, the truth is, these days I hardly ever get my much coveted 8 hours of beauty rest even though I'm completely baby-free. Instead, every night this past week when I climb into bed and sleepily lay down on my plush European pillow-topped, feather-bed covered mattress, the moment my head rests against the pillow it's like some switch gets pulled in my brain and I'm instantly wide awake. My mind starts flipping through on warp speed and in vivid technicolor every tiny little thing that would be on my "to-do" list, if I got over enough of my anxiety to create one.

When I finally do drift off to sleep, the nature of my sleep is not the deep, dream-filled slumber that I love that makes me feel like I've worked through deep issues while in a virtual state of unconsciousness. The kind of sleep that leaves you waking up feeling delicious and heavy and filled with a sense of contentment. Rather, it's this terribly unsatisfying sleep that hovers on the edge of wakefulness for hours and leaves my fragile rest vulnerable to the passing car horns or the 3 a.m. garbage removal crew on the street below. Usually, it seems that it's not until early morning that I'm finally able to drift into a deeper, more restful sleep. Waking up under these circumstances is, of course, torturous. Like today: I wanted to stay in bed so badly this morning!

Part of the reason behind my lack of sleep is definitely the impending move. What I decribed in an earlier post as my countdown to apartment liberation doesn't feel liberating just yet. It feels more like I'm walking perilously on a tightrope while shackled to a million pounds of dead weight dangling from my ankles and dragging me down towards the abyss below. I'm stressed, I'm pressured. The dead weight has post-it notes attached to it with messages like: "Find a storage place," "Search for jobs," "Sort all of the contents of your studio into 'Boyfriend's Apt,' 'Storage,' or 'Toss' piles," "Throw out the clothes that you haven't worn for the last 5 years," (Prue says the rule is 1 year), "Decide whether to sell or store the furniture that won't fit in Boyfriend's much smaller Chelsea Apt," "Fix your resume," "Send out some applications," "DO YOUR LF WORK." Yikes! You can imagine why I'm having such difficulty picking the weight up and getting on with it.

Today though, I made another teensy step forward. Actually it's huge. Who am I kidding? It was more than I did the last 4 days combined. I reserved a storage place!! Pretty awesome, right? I called up Manhattan Mini Storage and spoke to the Most-Helpful-Reassuring-Man-Ever. He was able to provide me with a storage unit right next to Boyfriend's apartment for half of what I though it would cost, on the day I needed it, and for as long as I need it. Not only that, but he also offered to supply me with movers and a truck. When I explained that Boyfriend and I were going to try to do it ourselves, Most-Helpful-Reassuring-Man-Ever told me that if I could guarantee storing my stuff for a month (hell ya) then he could hook me up with a free truck. Is this man an angel or what? On top of that, throughout our conversation, he kept telling me not to worry, and that everything would work out just fine. I think I'm in love.

I got off the phone with Most-Helpful-Reassuring-Man-Ever and raced down the hall to Prue's office to share my elation. I ran into her office and shut the door and then gushed out the whole story in a gleeful torrent. She was as excited as I was and clapped her hands. Prue, incidentally, has something far greater to be excited about: She just gave notice!! OMG. She's my hero. If I wasn't so freaking happy for her, I would be green with jealousy. Perhaps Prue let some of her joy over her own incredible life changes wash over into enthusiasm for my smaller life changes. Whatever the reason, when I shared my storage-space news with her, the girl responded with excitement and pumped me up. Like any most-excellent friend should have.

I left her office even more gleeful than when I had arrived and quickly called Boyfriend to share with him the news. I knew I had been stressing him out with my stress and I thought he would be proud and happy that I had finally picked up the dang phone and made some decisions. I thought he would have been absolutely thrilled to know that he would not have to suffer through anymore of these conversations:

Me: I don't know what to do! I don't know if I should store everything, or sell everything, and I don't know how much will fit in your place, and storage is probably going to be so expensive, so maybe I should sell everything, but maybe I shouldn't, I don't know what to do!

Boyfriend: Hmmm... You just have to decide.

Me: But I can't decide! I just don't know what to do. Should I sell everything, or keep it all? It's such a waste of money, but I don't know what's going to happen, and I like my things and I don't want to get rid of everything... but I don't know what I should do!

Boyfriend: Hmmm... Why don't you make a list and just decide what you have to do?

Me: I just can't do this. I'm a basketcase!

Boyfriend: No, you're not sweetie.

Stop. Rewind. Repeat.

However, when I called Boyfriend, instead of being jubilant, leaping through the phone and doing cartwheels on my desk, Boyfriend's response was a fairly monotone sounding, "That's good." No gushing. No joy. When I said, proddingly, "Aren't you excited?" (hint, hint: Act excited, pretty pretty please with whip cream and cherry on top), he said, "I'm happy, but I don't know if you can actually get excited over a storage unit." I said with 100% certainty, "Yes, you really, really can." But it did not amp up Boyfriend's enthusiasm level. And lest you think Boyfriend might simply be a stoic, unenthusiastic sort of male, allow me to correct you. This is the same boy who roars up from his seat with a lot of hooting and hollering every time the Red Wings or Michigan scores. The boy can bring it, just not, apparently, for me and my newly decided upon storage unit.

I know his less than enthusiastic response was in part because he's at work and because he's also stressed out and tired. And let's face it, me getting a storage unit ultimately means that he's one step closer to having to carry a ton of boxes and there's nothing exciting about that. But still, his less than elated response left me feeling a touch... deflated. It's weird how an interraction with someone close to you can so easily dampen your feelings, even when you know they didn't mean to have that affect on you, and even when you know that deep down they are supportive of your efforts. But, nobody likes feeling like an over-eager cocker spaniel foolishly leaping about for a little back-handed pat of attention, and for some reason (the reasons are being worked out in therapy) that's how his response made me feel. It's also annoying that someone else's lack of enthusiasm, however unintended, could bring your enthusiasm down. Why do things work that way?

I let myself feel deflated, but only for a moment. Then I got over it. Mostly. After writing this all down, I think I'm sufficiently purged of any remaining vestiges of the minor disappointment. I'm back to feeling pretty damn excited that I finally made some progress on the moving front. It's just such a huge relief to have one detail nailed down. Ahhh... Sigh of happiness. Maybe sleep will come easier tonight.


Bean said...

Maybe we are to difficult to understand when we are excited. Tex does the same thing: shows no excitement when I am thrilled about something.

Bean said...

Don't throw away clothes! Box me up some and ship them out to me...Please!!! And then if you ever want it again I will have it!