Friday, March 16, 2012

My messed up sleep schedule, the Hunger Games, and my lovely imagination


I'm really sorry it's been so long since I last posted. Sorry that there isn't more inspiring things going on to share with you all, but also sorry that I haven't made the time for it. The last few weeks that I have been posting on here, I felt more complete, and more in-tune with my whole self rather than just the half of myself that connects with work. '

Speaking of work. I now know how messed up sleep gets when you work night shift. When I first started on nights during my training, I was drained all the time, but I was also switching back and forth from days to nights because I had day time classes and night time work hours. Now that training is over, and I'm on my own, I'm all nights. And it was good for a while. I'm still adjusting, so I can't say that it's not good any more. I love the pace of the night shift, and I love the people. But MAN OH MAN do I feel like I've been hit by a bus a lot.  Some days you sleep fine, but when you try to switch back to a day schedule on your days off, it's almost impossible for me to wake up when I need to. Then there are the nights that I am up til 4:00am with a second wind (or a good book....or both, which makes it more deadly). And then there are nights like last night when I went to bed early (10:20) and crashed out, waking up numerous times at night, happy that I was sleeping when it was dark and that I still had many hours to go until my alarm went off at 8.  Only, my alarm went off, and in my sleep-induced state, I turned it off and fell asleep  - AGAIN! - and didn't wake up until 11am.
This picture was taken on vacation a few years ago, but just goes to show you the ridiculous state in which I sleep... i.e. my nest.
This is why I am not very productive any more. I just can't get up! Even waking at 11 this morning, my eyes felt glued shut and I couldn't muster the strength to get out of the cozy nest of my bed.
So take my ridiculously destroyed sleeping patterns and throw in a ridiculously good book series, and you get...what?  An even more ridiculously destroyed sleep pattern, but one that's totally worth it because it's just SOOOOO GOOD!
Enter: The Hunger Games.
Image from jodysparks.com - thank you!
Ever since I can remember, I have had a very vivid imagination. Whether reading a book or watching a movie, or just playing on my own, I could always transform myself into another character (totally all in my head, because, really it was disappointing when I'd look in the mirror and realized I still looked like my self, not like Pocahontas or Gina Davis in "A League of Their Own"). But this is what was so exciting about books and movies, and that's what their supposed to do, transform you, take you someplace you've never been before, escape reality.

The problem lies in the fact that I HAVEN'T CHANGED! I'm nearly 25 years old, and I'm sitting up at 3am, sleep deprived and gripping my Nook to read just one more chapter of The Hunger Games. Trying to figure out each character as if they were my friend. And what's worse - honestly, I can't believe I am confessing this here - is that when I do fall asleep, my mind is riddled with this half-story of actually being a part of the hunger games. Yes, I totally had a dream last night that I was Katniss. Ok, I said it. Laugh and move on.

Needless to say, I loved the series. It's definitely not the type of book I would have picked up, and another thing I hate to admit, but I started reading it because the movie trailer looked so enticing. Even through the first couple chapters of the first book, I kept telling myself to stop and find something else, something about weddings or something that I could relate to a little more. And I thought the whole plot was a little twisted. But something kept pulling me in, and forcing me to keep going, until I was hooked and sacrificing a few hours of sleep. It was something I could relate to, in a very different way, and Suzanne Collins has worked some literary magic that brought out the imaginative side of me once again.

There is definitely more I could say about this book. And maybe I will... if I can bring myself to be that analytic about something, or maybe after I go see the movie. But for now, it's stuck in my head. I'm in that post-book sadness when you start to realize that it was just a story, and that the characters weren't people you really knew, even though it felt like you did. And OK, so I am 25 and still pretending in some way that 
I am a character in a book. SO?! I'm taking this moment to say that I think that's A-OK, because there are far worse things I could do, and far less-imaginitive ways to live my life.

And I choose to live imaginatively.