THE ODDS (Debbie Does ALS)


A series of uncomfortable events

Have you ever had one of those nights? Where no matter what, something is just off?

I was perfectly situated in my lovely bed by 10 PM. Reading always puts me to sleep and this night was no exception; I began to drowse within the hour. John came in, turned off the lights, and put my iPad away. I settled back against my very inviting pillow and was out.

From my position on the bed, I'm not able to see either of the two clocks in my room, so I don't know what time it was when I woke up. It was pitch black outside my window, so I knew it was either very late or very early. Regardless, I woke up because the heat was oppressive. I listened for what seemed an eternity--the furnace roared without taking a rest. Not wanting to disturb him, but knowing I would go mad if I didn't find some relief from this heat, I called John. He stumbled, still mostly asleep, to the thermostat and adjusted it. It wasn't long before I noticed an improvement, and was able to go back to sleep.

Sleep was again interrupted when I moved my legs and the pillow under them shifted; my attempts at repositioning the pillow caused my blanket to get bunched up around my knees, leaving my feet exposed and cold. Poor John was called on a second time to correct pillow and blanket.

By this time, I was fully awake. I stared into space thinking about nothing and everything. I looked around the room and was not happy to see a giant spider walking on the wall across from me. My eyes started to sting, then water, tears running down my face. The idiot tickle teased, so naturally I began to cough, which caused my right arm to relocate away from its supportive pillow. Try as I might, I couldn't move my arm back.  To add insult to injury, my sleeve bunched around my elbow--very irritating, almost painful, because of the bunchy wrinkles (the sleeve, not the arm). The pillow behind my head also reacted to my coughing by shifting just enough to rob it of any pleasantness. I looked at the wall, but the spider was nowhere to be seen...very soon I was convinced it was walking across my chest. So there I was, arm and pillow out of position, tears drying on my face, with a spider walking on my defenseless lump of a body. Should I wake John a third time? I didn't have the heart.

I would say I tossed and turned the rest of the night, but we all know that would be a huge exaggeration. What isn't an exaggeration is that my mind tossed and turned and I did not get any real sleep for the next several hours.

Thank goodness I know how to dig deep and get through a tough course.


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