Somnambulance – sleepwalking (synonym for the noun somnambulism)
som (as in somber)
nam (“I hear you wuz in ‘nam“)
bu (like beautiful)
lance (like the crackers…or the bike-riding testicular cancer ninja)
The Godfather introduced me to this kick-ass word last week, and I have decided that it’s got to be one of my favorite words of all time.
It’s such a beautiful word.
And it somehow still sounds like “ambulance,” which is not really so pretty to me. Who knows.
I don’t sleepwalk. I think I may have, once, a long time ago. I woke up squatting in my closet, after having awoken from a dream about going to the bathroom. Thankfully, I did not urinate on my clothes.
Have I already told that story before?
But I do talk in my sleep. The Mama always told me that my father and I both talked in our sleep, and when she would stay up late reading, she would hear me mumbling something, then hear him mumble something, then hear me again…and it almost sounded like we were having a weird sleep mumble conversation.
I still do that occasionally, but I think my biggest annoying sleep habit is grinding my teeth. This is a trait that I get from The Mama. I’ve actually woken up with a sore jaw before, apparently because I had ground my teeth so violently in my sleep that it caused pain. I’m pretty sure this didn’t really start until I was in college, when I learned the meaning of the word “stress.”
The one thing I definitely don’t do in my sleep is snore. Well, I take that back. I think I do when I have a cold, or maybe little tiny snores every so often, but I don’t snore loudly.
The love of my life, however…from about ten minutes after he lays down to the minute he wakes up, he’s got this terrible, grizzly-bear-gurgling-snot sound coming from his face. And the worst part is that it is not rhythmic in any way, shape or form. It will go on a beat for three snores, then do the “huh-wack, snork, *cough cough*, snort” thing before it goes into a much slower or faster beat.
I found that it’s the “not having a rhythm” thing that bothers me the most. I can kind of block out a sound if it’s predictable. If it’s the same, and I don’t have to think about it, it’s ok, and I can go to sleep. But if it keeps changing, getting louder or softer, faster or slower, or just doesn’t fall into any easily discernible pattern, I have to listen to it. I must stay awake and monitor it, and confirm that it is, in fact, still whatever it was one minute ago.
I’m totally serious about this. That is how my brain functions, at least when I’m trying to go to sleep. It’s like I have to compute everything and analyze it. If it can be analyzed, it must be analyzed.
Say the baby in the crib across the room is wiggling around a little. I have to listen to the wiggles and decide if the wiggles are “still asleep” wiggles or “I’m about the wake up” wiggles. Is the wiggle coming from the edge of the bed? Are they “I’m uncomfortable” wiggles? “Too hot” wiggles? And the list goes on until either the wiggles stop or until further evidence emerges, such as the “OMG I’m awake and hungry and wet and if you don’t come get me now I will starve to death and drown in my own urine” scream.
Or the dishwasher running. It is super loud and obnoxious, but it is rhythmic. It just goes woosh, woosh, woosh. And everything is cool. That is, until 10 minutes into it when the little dish liquid door opens. It goes thu-bump! Kyla used to pick on me because every single night that it did it I would sit up straight in bed and go “what was that?!” Then he would mumble “dishwasher.gobacktosleep” and I would lay there for another half hour wondering if it really was the dishwasher.
Anybody gaining a better understanding of why I never sleep well?
I won’t go into my nightly routines when I was pregnant, but let’s just say that in addition to the noises and lights and things that I have always had to deal with, I also had to worry about uterine aches, pains, jabs, jolts, twitches and other turbulence. Can you imagine how many hours I laid awake considering the possible causes for those crazy feelings that I later discovered to be baby kicks?
Oh, and when you throw in a cat chasing a feather ball around the house, street noises, dogs barking and change in the dryer, you have a perfect recipe for me spending the entire next day inwardly begging my two-year-old to end her boycott on naps so Mommy can get the baby milk-drunk-asleep and doze on the couch for an hour. Of course, this never happens.
I wonder if there is a really awesome word for “lack of sleep due to being crazy?’ Oh, wait, maybe that’s insomnia.