Blame it on the Moon

3:15 am and I’m awake in the night again. This happens each month, a cycle of two or three restless nights when I wake up in the wee hours, who can say why—no noises in the house or outside, no headache or body ache or cramp. No need to pee. No mouth dried out. No snores from anyone in the bed next to me (no one in the bed next to me). No cat, no dog, no bird, no rabbit or hamster; no neighbor, no homeless wanderer in the alley rattling his basket.

And here I am. Awake and awake. Tossing and turning. Thinking and thinking. That’s the damnedest part, the thinking: What should I wear to ___________? I need to write to ____________. Here’s what’s wrong with the piece I wrote yesterday: _____________, _____________, ___________, ___________, ____________, ____________, and ____________. Maybe I should wear the ____________. Oh! I completely forgot _________. And , Oh! I need to __________. Maybe the black dress with the beads, but then which shoes?

At 5:15 I think I may as well get up. The sky is beginning to lighten in the east, but I am so tired. Maybe I should just read something for a few minutes, to stop the mind from its twirly-whirlies.

But I don’t read anything, and then . . .  it’s 8:15 and somehow I did sleep. Isn’t it strange, we can remember exactly when we wake up, but never the exact time we go to sleep.

June’s full moon is tomorrow. The Full Strawberry Moon, and the “smallest” full moon of the year. A mini-moon some call it. But even though it’s at its apogee—furthest from the earth in its annual cycle—it’s still a sleep-stealer for me. I’ll take a good book to bed with me tonight.


17 thoughts on “Blame it on the Moon

  1. Judy — 5:00 a.m. and the sky is lightening. But, I realize, that is not why I am up. ‘Tis the moon pulling at the tides of my body. Here I sit, alpaca throw warming my shoulders, thrilled to find your Strawberry Moon comments. Juanita

  2. Hi Judy
    Many thanks for your post.

    I bought a small, secondhand Zen book today in a rundown bookshop and the first page that opened to me – which I would like to share with you – said:

    “ Upon a soul absolutely free from thought and emotions,
    Even the tiger finds no room to insert his fierce claws.”
    Zen poem

    Ah, bliss….


    • Ah, thank you Michael! I really appreciate your comment, the wisdom of Zen and the idea that you bought a secondhand book in a rundown bookshop. One of my favorite things to do, too. Thanks for your comment.

  3. Hi Judy,
    Dear Judy,
    I appreciate your remarks and observations about how we can remember the exact time of waking up, but not the exact time we fall asleep. I’m glad that you only experience such early waking only once a month, like you say. I’m up very early every day ever since I got “old.” By 4 A.M., I’m usually watching the early morning news, putting my two dogs out in the backyard, having my usual breakfast of coffee and two slices of toast. I’ve gotten used to this, I suppose, because I’ve tried to sleep later, but cannot. Consequently, my eyes start closing between 7 and 8 P.M. every night. Oh, well, I don’t like to drive at night anyway anymore (ever since I got “old”). I wonder what my life will look like when I’m really old…like 80 or 90, if I live that long…….By the way, I’m 73….(yawn)
    Arlene Kosakoff

    • HI Arlene. 4 AM!!! I can’t even imagine arising at that hour. It’s still dark out, isn’t it. Well, I guess we all have our regular cycles. I’m generally a nightowl, but trying to go to sleep earlier (by 11) so I can get up at 7. That would be new for me. And listen, 73 is NOT OLD!!! This birthday (in October), I’m celebrating 75. And believe me, I’ll be celebrating! I hope we both live into our really old age, and that we do so gracefully. Thanks for commenting on the post. It’s always so good to hear from you.

    • Arlene,

      You and I have that same beautiful Linda Standard Time: 4 AM rise and shine and 8 – 10 PM snoresville. The moon actually was big, over here in my part of Canada (does that make a difference ha) but the dang thing kept playing let’s slip in and out of these clouds….

      Hang in there. Early is beautiful

  4. I put on Law And Order reruns, pull on my eyeshades, set the TV to turn itself off in thirty minutes and pass out. Better than any medicine. Reading can keep me awake. Go figure!

    • Hi Jackie, nice to see you here; it’s been a while. I’ve tried reading something very complex and maybe just a little boring, that often helps me fall asleep–even in the middle of the day.

  5. I have the very same sleep disruption. Am delighted to hear that I can blame it on the moon. Here I had been blaming it on that second glass of wine!

    • Hi Kathy, thanks for your note. and I thought the second glass helped induce sleep, rather than the other way around. Still even wine is no match for a full moon, even one at its furthest distance from the earth.

  6. I hear you. I used to have the same problem, and sometimes still do but it’s rare now. Everything is super worrying in the night. All the minor issues become larger issues and somehow more urgent. Yet, not urgent enough to get me out of bed but urgent enough to consume my thoughts and make sleep allude me. If things do get worrying enough that they force me out of bed then it’s up for a cuppa and a little sit, sip and think. Often, when I can force myself to get out of bed to do this routine the sleep arrives a lot quicker on returning to my bed. The reaon? Because I realize that I am worrying needlessly and often the thoughts can simply be written down and dealt with in the morning. By morning everything is less important and if I read that note I left myself I see I was worrying needlessly. I guess that’s what helped me overcome the restless nights. That little routine. I hope it settles for you soon too. 🙂

    • Hi “Zakgirl” Thanks for commenting. I know those worries are needless and wish my brain would find something better to do with itself when it refuses to surrender to sleep. I’ve heard that getting out of bed helps, and that idea of writing down those worries is a way to transplant them out of the mind. I think I’d be embarrassed to even see what I was worried about if I could even read my middle-of-the-night handwriting. I appreciate your advice. Thanks.

  7. Who needs a moon when you have idiots living upstairs who think box and mattress means just that, no springs. Like the ones that scream for mercy 23 hours a day. Yes day and night.

    Judy 5:15 is a good time, it means I am done weights and now it’s banana time followed with coffee and notebook. Except my month long slump hasn’t completely left. Methinks to be impatient when nobody answers my agent queries and falls all over me.

    Tonight moon or no I will fall asleep over a ghost story while overhead the neighbours squeal more slowly in order to not make noise. Just like a donkey’s bray recorded backwards and played at high speed.

    • Oh Leenda, You’re one of those morning chirpers who gets the best worms, while us nightowls just sit in our trees and hoot at the world. Earplugs any defense against the upstairs neighbors?

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