A moment of understanding

This is the first of what might turn into a long series of postings about What I Did the Day Before Bob Dylan’s Birthday (Dylan is just a few months younger than me, but he’s in way better shape than I am), aka yesterday, 5/23 — which was packed with terrible pain (I awoke with a fiercely disabled right hand, and a sore left thumb); an enormous number of achievements; several striking epiphanies, large and small; a pile of useful and attractive acquisitions (more straw-wheat-ware!); an excellent morning appointment with my rheumatologist (my inflammation guy); an interval of brisk walking (with my walker) inside Palo Alto Medical Foundation that was, astonishingly, entirely free of my vexing Dyspnea on Exertion; a lot of correspondence with friends; dealing with a collection of baffling administrative things, most still unresolved; and, of course, shaving myself, cleaning the kitchen, and making my bed, in case a friend would be coming by to take some household photos for me (I want things to be nice for visitors).

There’s probably more, it’s hard to keep track. I was dead on my feet by 4 pm, and went to bed at 5. Up at 2 am today after a really fine sleep. Breakfast just after 3 and back into the whirlwind. The second load of laundry is almost finished in the dryer.

Now, for this posting, a very small epiphany from yesterday, about the mystery of how my body and mind working together manage to wake me up, all through the night, at within a few minutes either way of the hour, to take a whizz (I excrete an astonishing amount of urine during 8-10 hours of sleep). I awake briefly, remembering that I was last up just before 11, and immediately know that now it’s midnight more or less. and when I look at the clock, it’s just past midnight.

It seemed eerily magical. But then in the last week, the pattern changed. The interval between whizz breaks continued to be about an hour — that means that the pressure to urinate takes about an hour to build up in my sleep (during the day, when I’m awake, it’s 20-25 minutes) — but the target times were different: one day it was the quarter-hour, one day it was 25 minutes past, one day it was 40 minutes past. Whoa.

Yes, you’ve all figured out what was going on, but that’s because I gave you all the evidence, which I didn’t have until recently (for months it was more-or-less on the hour every night). But now it’s obvious: it all depends on when I first go to sleep — recently, that’s been at random times, whenever I wind down from my day — and then the breaks just come alone at roughly hourly intervals.

Before that, why the regularity? Because on weekdays I watched an MSNBC newscast through to the end of the hour, then went to bed, pretty much on the hour, so setting my clock:

 4-5 PT: The ReidOut (with Joy Reid); 5-6 PT: All in With Chris Hayes; 6-7 PT: used to be Rachel Maddow on Mondays, Alex Wagner the rest of the week, now it’s Alex Wagner Tonight every weekday

That was yesterday’s little epiphany. More postings to come, on other parts of yesterday, in whatever order strikes my fancy.



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