I scroll through the Netflix menu, only half seeing it through sleepy eyes. They seem to have added a whole slew of Lifetime TV movies, and I find something oddly nostalgic and comforting about that, bad acting and all.
I carefully re-stack my pillows under my right arm. I’m basically cocooned in pillows at this point, the only way I can get comfortable enough to sleep (which, of course, I’m not doing at the moment)
Just about exactly 3 months post surgery, my shoulder’s starting to feel a bit better, but I try not to think about it… lest I jinx myself.
I pick a movie, based solely on the cheesiness of the title, and roll onto my side. That was a bad decision, as it necessitates starting the pillow stacking process all over again.
I’m back on my back.
I stare at the ceiling fan, letting my eyes go out of focus until the blades look like they reverse direction. I remember doing that as a kid, to pass time in church.
I think about church as a kid, and all the baggage it brought with it.
I get up for water. I take a couple of ibuprofen for my headache, being as quiet as I possibly can, because if the cat hears me in the kitchen she’ll start incessantly meowing, convinced it’s time for breakfast.
I resist the urge to check on all the kids, and assure myself that they’re all still breathing.
I return to bed, and look at the two people already in it. Both my husband and my six year old, sleeping soundly, their breathing deep and even. I try not to resent them for it.
I see the blood pressure monitor (bought not because I have a blood pressure problem per se, but because our health card paid for it, and I find it fascinating to monitor) on the night stand when I set down my water, and consider taking my blood pressure, just for something to do. Decide against it when I remember that its velcro is pretty much the loudest velcro in existence.
Stack the pillows.
Play the movie.
Play my week’s to-do list in a constant loop in my head. Think about all the things I should have done, need to do, and want to do. Think about the fact that things happen, and plans change, and sometimes to-do lists don’t mean anything at all.
My brain is reaching, reaching…. for something that I can’t see. Old mistakes, old conversations, old embarrassments, old hurts. If I think about all of them, cross them all off the list, will I eventually rest?
I stare at the ceiling fan some more.
I look at my movie, and have no idea what’s going on. Someone’s crying (unconvincingly). Someone’s always crying on those Lifetime movies.
I briefly doze at some point during a courtroom scene. I jolt awake, with a sharp inhale of breath. A nightmare, this time about the upcoming conference. I think of some conference-related things I need to do. I think of seven more.
Will I remember in the morning?
Why don’t I have a pad of sticky notes next to my bed?
If I go get my phone, I can take care of some emails, and get a jumpstart on my day.
Is that sound I just heard coming from outside? From my kitchen? From my 14 year old’s room? Is someone getting murdered?
I stay in bed, where I’m safer.
The credits are rolling; my movie is over. I switch to Friends, which has lost none of its appeal even after its 83723rd viewing. I’m up to Season 7, episode 10: The One With The Holiday Armadillo.
I roll over onto my side. Fix my pillows.
I hear Mike’s alarm, suspended somewhere in that space between dreams and consciousness. It’s 5:00. I hear the shower running. Then he’s saying goodbye, and I mutter something in return. Good bye? I love you?
I try to close my eyes, but sleep still won’t come. My head hurts. Did I already take ibuprofen?
On my back. Stack my pillows. Fix my covers.
I start another Friends. The One With All The Cheesecakes. Season 7 wasn’t my favorite season, but it’ll do. Wasn’t Tag Jones (Eddie something. Eddie Cahill) also on some sort of police drama? One of the Law and Orders? Or CSI? Criminal Intent? Something? At 5:30 in the morning, on 2 hours of sleep, it feels imperative that I know. I make a mental note to look it up on IMDB when I get up.
The sun’s coming up. The room’s getting brighter.
I force myself to stay in bed until after 6:30. I kiss the girl, still sleeping away, on the cheek. I pull the covers a little higher over her body, and she stirs just a little bit as she snuggles more comfortably into the pillow.
The house is quiet – so quiet – as I head straight to the kitchen, tasting my coffee (the only thing that’ll get me through the next several hours) even before it’s made.
I’ve already forgotten all about Eddie Cahill.