10 In Midlife Crisis Fodder/ Multiple Personalities-Take Your Pick

Midlife Rhenna – The Ugly Underbelly of Age

You know, midlife makes for all kinds of juicy stories. Once you hit a certain age you stop worrying about what everyone else thinks and start doing what feels good. Take that time at the Mercury Lounge…

Oh wait.

Me and the girls claimed Vegas rules on that one. Sorry. Forget I said anything.  😛

But you get the point.

What I don’t usually talk too much about related to midlife are the bummer parts. Things like wrinkles, squeaky joints, and the fact that you’ve got a set of readers stashed in pretty much every room of the house.

Now, most of these middle-aged annoyances I’ve found a way to deal with.

  • Wrinkles? Hello, Botox! (Hell yes, I use it.)
  • Squeaky/creaking joints? Lost the P90X routine and started a love/hate relationship with the elliptical.
  • Eyesight? Well, the readers have finally pissed me off, so I’ve got an appointment with the doc tomorrow. If he tells me to, “Deal with it,” I may be blogging from prison on Wednesday.

But there’s one part to aging I’m not handling so well.


I chase a good night’s sleep with the same devotion of a tween girl at a Justin Bieber concert. For me it’s not insomnia so much as a crap shoot as to whether or not my brain disengages. Some nights I could sleep through a nuclear attack, and others I don’t feel like I do more than doze.

I stressed the feel part on purpose because, in my desperate attempt to solve my wonky sleep cycles, I’ve turned to sleep monitoring devices. According to my FitBit, which uses motion to gauge your quality of sleep, I’m rockin’ the nighttime routine. According to a sleep app I’m using on my phone, which uses sounds made when you toss and turn, I’m not doing bad either.

In reality? I call bullshit foul. More often than not it seems like I’m sleeping with one eye open. Or like I’ve just closed my eyes when the screaming demon from hell alarm clock goes off.

Does anyone else find themselves chasing sleep? What have you found that helps? Or do you even bother anymore and just operate on naps?

I gotta tell you…this sleep thing scares me.  Before you know it, I’ll be up and having coffee with my dad at 3am.

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  • Reply
    Gretchen Wing
    January 20, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Can’t believe I’m admitting it, but last night I had some warm milk…with sugar in it. I was tired from 3 bad nights in a row & wanted to avoid a 4th. It worked. Or maybe that was the wine.

    • Reply
      January 20, 2014 at 6:07 pm

      I’m not a huge milk fan. (Shh…don’t tell my kids.) But I can totally go for the wine. 🙂

  • Reply
    Marianna Heusler
    January 20, 2014 at 11:58 am

    Sometimes I wake up at three-thirty in the morning which is a real bummer because that darn alarm rings at five-fifty five. I’m exhausted for the rest of the day (chasing first grade girls around the classroom) but I just tell myself I will sleep like a baby the next night (although babies don’t really sleep well, do they?)

    • Reply
      January 20, 2014 at 6:06 pm

      What is it about 3-4:30am? If I wake up, it’s always during that time period. Freaky!

  • Reply
    January 20, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    Do you remember the days when I could sleep on command? You even teased me about it in a song! Oh what I would give to have some of that sleep back. I pretty much operate on 3-4 hours now myself. I have tried everything to help with sleep. Best bets? Solid routine and no tv. Try soothing music or a hypnosis or meditation app. Praying. Whatever you do don’t take any medicine stronger than melatonin. I personally have had disastrous results from my association with a certain innocent looking sleeping pill! If all else fails just accept that maybe you don’t need as much sleep as you think you do. If you did, you’d be sleeping!

    • Reply
      January 20, 2014 at 6:06 pm

      I’ll bet you can still sleep on command. 🙂

  • Reply
    CJ Burright
    January 20, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    I’ve always been a sleepaholic – I live for weekends when I can sleep in as long as I want. Once in a while I’ll have trouble catching some Z’s and I turn to Tylenol PM. Plus, having a white noisemaker helps. Lavender? Counting sheep? Just watch out for Ambien – I’ve heard some pretty freaky tales from that one, such as (this happened to a friend, not me – honest!) while having sex with her boyfriend, a woman on Ambien believed she was in the circus. Maybe getting it on with a clown? I wasn’t sure I wanted to know any more details than that… 🙂

    • Reply
      January 20, 2014 at 6:05 pm

      Oh, CJ–I gotta meet some of your friends! And, yes! Ambien is some weird stuff. They gave me one the night my water broke–allegedly to help me get some rest before they started inducing the next morning. Did it turn out that way? Oh, hell no. I ended up having weird dreams about the huge-ass light above me turning into some deadly version of a transformer. Never taken one since!

  • Reply
    Christine Ashworth
    January 21, 2014 at 8:51 am

    I didn’t get real sleep until I stopped drinking alcohol (sob!). If I have more than one small glass of wine, I wake up at 3:30 and can’t get back to sleep for a couple of hours. VERY frustrating. Otherwise, naps are good on weekends…

  • Reply
    Jason Andrew Bond
    January 29, 2014 at 11:42 am

    RHENNA! 🙂 I’m right there with you. I’ve struggled with sleep quite a bit and I don’t like taking sleeping pills etc. as I feel like a drunk walrus when I wake up. I have a friend who has always been a sound sleeper and I wonder what that might be like. I’ve found three things that help me. One is melatonin. When I know I’m going to have a poor night’s sleep I take a bit of this as it leaves me with no after effects the next day. (Of course talk with a doc before taking anything, eh). The next is meditation. I find that if I meditate regularly, my mind doesn’t bother itself so much when it’s time to shut off at night. Finally playing a stupid game like Zuma when I can’t sleep helps me out. Apparently your mind will worry itself with the last few problems it was trying to solve. If you give it a simple problem like a computer game to worry about, it will try and figure out how to get three colored balls together rather than how to save the free world from carbon emissions. 🙂

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