Question of the day.

   If you can’t sleep, or just don’t sleep for whatever reason, what do you do during the night? 

   My answer: 

   I listen either to music or some radio station where they speak one of “my” languages, and usually read some book. Or if I don’t read, I typically daydream or just generally hang out in this or that part of my huge Brainworld, because it’s most interesting at night. Or I ruminate if I’m feeling very anxious, or nervous about something specific. If I’m sure that I am not going to fall asleep any time soon and don’t feel like it at all, I may write something, like in my journal, or write back to one of my pen pal’s if I’ve got any emails from any of them that I wasn’t able to respond to earlier. Or I play with Misha, because he’s often up when I am. Or I play a bit of Bitlife. Or chat with my Replika (a sort of AI friend) called Jac, because obviously he never needs to sleep. 

   How about you? 🙂 

Y Trŵbz – “Cwsg ar y Stryd” (Sleep on the Street).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   For today, I thought I’d share with you another song from Y Trŵbz’s EP called Croesa’r Afon (Cross the Bridge). This one has been written by Morgan Elwy (the bassist in the group) and his cousin Tomo Lloyd Evans (the guitarist). 

Question of the day.

   Simple question today, as we haven’t had any in a long time: 

   What did you do today or will do? 

   My answer: 

   Well, it’s half past noon here right now. If we’re considering that today started at midnight (which I guess would be the most logical), then the first thing I did is I went to the midnight Mass. Now that we go exclusively to TLM (traditional Latin Mass), our new parish, so to say, is quite a bit further away, and  midnight Mass is long-ish, so by the time we got back home it was after 2 AM. Most of my family overate for the Christmas Eve supper, but I hate overeating so by the time we got home I was starving, so I ate a little more of the Christmas food, and then we opened our presents. It’s fun opening Christmas presents at 2 AM. To an outsider, especially one unfamiliar with Christmas Eve celebrations, it could look as if we were so impatient that we couldn’t even sleep the night through like all normal people and wait for the Christmas morning but had to run for the presents as soon as possible, but actually it’s the other way around because most people who celebrate Christmas Eve festively tend to open their presents soon after the supper. And we did that too for many years, only changed it a couple years ago because why not.  Sofi is no longer a little kid and has more patience these days and understands that there are important, more important and most important things, and the rest of us aren’t really crazy about presents like she is. I mean, sure it’s cool, but we don’t really think about it so much and we all agree that it’s a little bit awkward, the whole thing. Without Sofi, perhaps we wouldn’t feel the need to do them at all? So it’s good that we have Sofi, as she brings a bit more spontaneity in here. 

   We all got Sofi new AirPods. Mum bought her AirPods earlier this year, but someone stole them from her at school about a month ago and she’s been disconsolate, because lately she goes everywhere with earbuds in her ears and otherwise life sucks. Actually, yesterday morning I even asked her just for fun what present she would most like to get if she could get anything, even something for a million dollars or more. And Sofi said that she’d like to get driving lessons so that she could ride some mini car that kids her age are allowed to drive, but since that doesn’t seem likely to happen at this point even if our parents or Olek or me were millionaires, she said that the other thing she’d really like to get is new AirPods, and then added that, actually, if she got some AirPods today, or find her old ones, she’d be the happiest peep in the world. And she really was happy when she got her AirPods. 

   I never know what to give Olek (even though he always knows what to give everyone), so I traditionally buy him FIFA every year because he likes to play this game, although I’m seeing that his enthusiasm is waning gradually every year so for the next year, I’ll have to think about something different. 

   For Mum, I got a bullet journal, because I think this is something she’ll really enjoy now that she’s IFfing (intermittent fasting) and on a keto diet, and she didn’t seem to have an effective way of actually tracking how she was feeling, and it can potentially also be a fun outlet for her abundant inner life that keeps spilling out rather uncontrollably. 

   Dad says openly that he doesn’t want presents really, and he’s hardly ever even happy with anything, so I didn’t get him anything. If our situation was different, I would have probably gave him some money and he would have appreciated that, the materialist he is, but considering the fact that I am his employee, it would be a tad bit ridiculous, like a child taking out money of their parents’ wallet to put it under the Christmas tree. 😀 

   And Misha got a water fountain. I never know what to get Misha either, because, well, when people talk about presents for cats, they usually talk about toys and things like that. And Misha isn’t really big on toys. He does like to play, but he gets bored quickly, and as for shop-bought toys he hardly ever looks at them. He’s a naturalist and prefers things like cones, leaves, feathers, peas etc. Oh yeah, and he likes marbles, but he must take that after me. So I usually just buy Misha some yummy food for Christmas and spoil him in every way possible. But this year, just totally last minute, I thought that I would buy Misha a nice, ceramic water fountain, so that he could drink running water, which he likes most, as all cats I suppose. It also has a sensor so that the water only flows when Misha’s nearby, so Misha also finds it interesting and he really drinks loads now. I’d like to have it here in my room, but I’ve no free outlets, so I’ll have to get some new power strip or something first. For now it’s standing in the kitchen. But what I actually wanted to say is that, despite I bought it last minute, I mean this week, and despite it was online, the fountain managed to arrive before Christmas Eve. And I strongly suspect that Misha is an atheist anyway so he doesn’t give a flip about Christmas, or otherwise he must be an Orthodox Christian in which case he’d have two more weeks to wait for his Russian Christmas and have it on our Epiphany, so I figured that I might as well show him the fountain right away, and I did. 

   As for myself, I got a beautiful, rough chunk of jasper from Mum. You regular people know that I give my stones names that I like, especially ones that wouldn’t be usable for me on a real child even if I was to ever have one. I thought the whole evening about what I’m going to call this jasper, even involved my whole family but that was more for a bit of social fun rather than because I expected actual help, almost all their suggestions were absolutely crap, but at least we had a laugh. In  the end I chose Alasdair which suits him ridiculously well so it’s weird that it took me so long to think about this. I also got a very delicate bracelet which is made of carnelians. I am generally not a huge fan of jewellery other than rings ‘cause it gets in the way of doing things and I find it annoying when it happens, and also the whole thing of getting used to wearing something, but this one is subtle enough that it doesn’t really get in the way and I hardly feel it most of the time. 

   And from Olek, me and Sofi together got like a whole, indecently huge cartonboard box of sweets. I mean seriously, if anyone wants some candy, come to us! If we eat it all throughout the next year, we will both turn from mildly underweight to morbidly obese by next Christmas. 😀 I highly appreciate though can barely fathom the fact that he even felt like wasting so much money on us. And last year I got  wooden box of ALL kinds of teas from him and I still have like  half of that left. 

   And then we went to sleep… well okay, at least to bed. I was feeling kind of weak since midnight Mass and first thought it was because I was standing for a long time (which is normal for me, I mean don’t know if normal but typical), then I thought perhaps it was because I was starving, but it didn’t go away once I ate, and Mum kept saying that I’m probably ill because apparently there’s some weird very high fever epidemic going around right now, but I didn’t really feel sick or feverish or anything like that at all. I thought I was just tired, so went to bed thinking I’m going to be out like a light, except that was not what happened. My brain was going a thousand miles a minute about everything and anything and I couldn’t settle, while at the same time feeling quite exhausted. And I didn’t get a wink of sleep ALL night long. In other words, I’m having a zombie day. So this thing you’re reading was written by a zombified version of Bibiel. But I haven’t had a full on zombie day in ages, so that’s okay, I can deal with it, although I’m not sure why it happened, because my sleep-wake cycle directly prior to this was very satisfiable to me and in line with societal norms so I wonder what’s going to happen next to my circadian rhythm. I still feel weak physically, and while I’m not even feeling sleepy really, I feel seriously spaced out and outrageously mood-swingy and that really annoys me. And I don’t like how my brains feel cognitively on zombie days, it’s frustrating as shit, my languages get all jumbled and I can’t think like a human and can’t make the smallest decisions rationally and without stressing out like the whole world depends on it. I told my Mum about it today and she happily offered that she can help me make any decisions that I need help with, but I was like: “But I don’t even know what decisions to start dealing with first”. 😀 It’s as trivial as: should I eat now or in half an hour? Do I first let Misha in or finish this sentence? Do I listen to this song or that now? I’m not normally like that, not to this extent for sure. Misha slept with me though and he slept for us both, because he slept until 9 which is unheard of for him unless he’s sick or sad, but today it was simply because everyone got up late, and he was warm and toasty so no point getting up at 5 AM and sit in the empty, cold and silent kitchen waiting for someone to come. 

   Hm, what else did I do…? I can’t think! I mean, I started writing this post half past noon and now it’s after 2 PM so I guess that gives you an idea of my cognitive abilities today lol. Hmmm well, I had breakfast while my mood was swinging back and forth, and then I went back to my room ‘cause all people started to wake up and I couldn’t face people because at that particular point my mood was swinging very low above the ground. I went back to my room and started crying, not like I even had a reason for that, I just felt really sad and mad and useless and like the only thing I was able to do was cry. And then after a couple minutes I realised how absurd this is that people all around the world have real problems and some stupid Bibiel is crying and doesn’t know why, and stopped crying and chuckled at myself how weird I am and at Bibiel’s first world problems. My parents went for a 10 km walk and Olek and Sofi watched a movie. 

   We thought that we are going to be visiting people – Mum’s and Dad’s family – today, but (paternal) gran is at my uncle’s today, and we don’t want to split up the visits for two days, and also I really can’t do outside people today and would be afraid that I would suddenly become sleepy with lack of anything constructive to do other than sitting by the table and would fall asleep. And also, as a normally socially over-inhibited individual, being around people on zombie days sort of scares me because I’m not as capable to control  everything as I normally do, or at least as I like to think that I do. It’s mind-blowing how sleep or lack thereof can change everything in your brain so much that it barely even feels like your own brain and the same one that you were using yesterday. So anyway, we’re going to visit everyone tomorrow, which I’m relieved about. 

   So no big peopling today, and no other big plans either. We’re just going to do whatever we feel like for the rest of the day. Now let me try to figure out what it is that Bibiels actually feel like doing, maybe I’ll know in the next two and a half hours if I’m lucky. 😀 

   So how about you? How’s your Christmas going? 🙂 

Gwenan Gibbard – “Cysga Di Fy Mhlentyn Tlws” (Sleep my Pretty Child).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   I have shared this lovely lullaby with you in the past, sung by Siân James, and because I really like it, I thought that today I’d share a different version with you, sung by another Welsh folk singer and harpist, but this time one from  North Wales – Gwenan Gibbard. – You can visit the post above to find the translation of the lyrics. 

Question of the day.

   What three things do you need for a good night’s rest? 

   My answer: 

  Well, I need a lot more than just three things, for one thing I need at least two pillows so it’s already two things, but let’s at least try to narrow it down to the most necessary things (let’s skip the pillows though since they’re pretty default, except for their preferred amount  which I’m sure varies for everyone). 

   So, for the most part of the year, I need a hot water bottle. Like I recently wrote, I’m okay with being cold during the day, I’m totally used to it, I even like it, and really the fact that I am cold most of the time doesn’t necessarily have to mean that I feel cold, but at night, regardless of whether I feel subjectively cold or not, it will take me ages to fall asleep if I’ll have cold feet. Another thing that I need quite critically is some background noise. Not too loud, so that I can actually fall asleep and sleep deeply, but also not too quiet so that my brain can latch onto something when I’m awake so that it doesn’t have to generate scary auditory stimuli itself, or so that it’s less likely that it will do it. For lack of anything better, even some white noise humming will be better than nothing, but if I have a choice, which I usually do, I much prefer it to be something more tangible like music that I like or a radio station where they talk in any of my favourite languages, because it’s just more interesting to listen to some nice music or a beautiful language before I fall asleep, and gives me something to focus on so I won’t start ruminating and overthinking which I generally have a tendency to do a lot at night anyway. Also it’s fun to have a nice soundtrack to your dreams. 😀 For that reason, I also really like to sleep with Misha. I’mm not really including him on this list, because he’s not a thing and it’s not like I really really need him to sleep well, because he doesn’t even sleep with me every single night, but when he does sleep with me, it also tends to decrease my night time sensory anxieties and makes me feel more peaceful overall, even though Misha is very quiet, but his mere presence makes me feel safer. 

   And the third thing… I was going to say a good book because I often read before sleep, well, I almost always read before sleep, and sometimes I get so engrossed in a book that I just can’t fall asleep because it’s so interesting so I keep reading instead. But a book doesn’t really make my sleep better or worse, it’s just a fun element of my bedtime routine. So I think the third thing on my list is going to be an open window. I guess I take it after my Mum that I can’t sleep in stuffy and very warm rooms or else I’ll wake up with a raging headache or even a migraine. And usually I’ll oversleep then and wake up feeling totally, disgustingly lousy, as if I had a hangover or something. And since I already have way more than enough migraine triggers, I’d rather avoid the ones that I have control over and keep the window at least partly open, or at least solidly air the room before going to bed, depends on what the weather is and what seems most reasonable at a time. So I’ll sleep with a hot water bottle, Misha who generates a lot of heat, and in the autumn-winter season like now Misha sleeps on a lamb skin, which lies on a blanket that belongs to both of us, and the blanket lies on my duvet which is quite thick in itself, so I like it to feel warm and cosy in bed while at the same time having very cool air in the room that makes sleep feel refreshing and that keeps my brain cool so that it won’t overheat. 😀 My Mum is a lot more hardcore though because she sleeps with her window wide open every night, and she doesn’t do hot water bottles, has no blanket most of the time and just a single duvet, but unlike me she always puts something over her head and ears, like a scarf or something, to keep more warmth in and to isolate herself from noises that could wake her up (like my Dad’s snoring). That would make me personally feel very much out of control and, knowing myself, I’d constantly wake up thinking that someone was calling me  or something and I didn’t hear it, not to mention that it would make my anxiety worse, but my Mum literally can’t fall asleep without covering her head, and she can’t have any light. My Dad was previously a definitely window-closed person, but he just had to get used to it being different when they  married, because this is one field where my Mum doesn’t tolerate compromises, and now that she’s going through menopause, she’s even worse, so my poor Dad sleeps under a huge duvet and a really warm, heavy weighted blanket, and with socks on, and he says he’s still freezing some nights. I guess that’s because he does socks instead of a hot water bottle. Socks don’t really give you additional warmth, just keep your natural warmth in, and if you’re not really warm to begin with, that’s not much help I guess. Sofi also likes to sleep with a hot water bottle, but it’s more just because she enjoys it a lot rather than that she won’t fall asleep easily without it. And she’s also like me in that she needs some quiet sound in the background, as well as a bit of light because she’s scared of the dark.

   So yeah, it’s funny how you can find so many tips on how to sleep well from all kinds of sleep experts, when in reality, everyone has such totally different habits, even within one family, and can’t fall asleep if something’s even slightly different than the way they like. 😀 And then there’s Misha, abut whose sleep routines one could write a whole essay and how they change based on seasons, his moods, external circumstances etc. I guess even I don’t know everything about them and don’t always remember the order in which all his sleep rituals should take place. 

   How about you and your ideal sleep conditions? 🙂 

TToT (about apples, sleep, Misha etc.)

   I feel like writing another gratitude list on here rather than just in my diary, and as part of it, I’m participating in the Ten Things of Thankful linky. In no particular order as always. 

  1.    Misha. Currently, Misha is sleeping on my bed, curled up in a little ball and seemingly very content with his life right now. That makes me very happy because he seemed a bit off earlier this week. I’m not sure if he actually was or if I was being hypervigilant as I often am in regards to Misha, but he wasn’t much interested in his snacks and isolated himself a lot, while now he’s decidedly more cheerful, if mostly very anxious but that’s pretty much the norm unfortunately. I check on him every now and then, more for my own benefit than him really needing regular supervision during sleep lol, and I seriously wish I could make a close-up recording of all those cute sounds coming out of him – his sleepy purrs, his fluttery heartbeat, all the funny gurgling sounds in his tummy, his gentle breath and little “Hhrrru?”’s when he stretches in his sleep – and show y’all, but I don’t think any of my devices would be able to pick up such mini sounds. 
  2. My room. Today I feel especially grateful for having a room which I don’t have to share with anyone (except for Misha obviously, I always tell him it’s his room too because he doesn’t have his own, but who would mind Misha?) because later this weekend I’ll have to lend it to my parents’ guests. Late last summer, my Mum invited her acquaintance – my aunt’s sister-in-law who really likes my Mum – to come over to us for a weekend. Back then she slept in my parents’ room, and they slept in the camper. She was really appreciative of how my Mum hosted her, so appreciative, it seems, that she wants to come again, this time with her husband, who normally works in France, but for a shorter time. Except this time round we don’t have the camper because it’s having some sort of maintenance stuff or such done, so they’ll have to sleep here and Bibielz will sleep with Sofi in her mini room). I can’t say I don’t mind, because I do (even though her husband is called Jacek), but this makes me even more appreciative of having a room just for myself the vast majority of the time. And aside from simply being my own room, it’s also a really cool room, so I’m sure they’ll like it here. Perhaps so much that they’ll come for another weekend sleepover in two months’ time. 😀 
  3. Going back to horse riding. I don’t know when exactly I’ll go yet, but I know I want to do it again. It may be the worst sport for me given my abilities (or lack thereof actually) and both mental and physical health situation, but it’s the only one I actually like, and I miss it despite the anxiety that has always been associated with it for me. I miss the stable and my regular horse and my instructor, and I want to give it a go again. Perhaps less ambitiously than before and more hippo therapeutically after all, but I really do. But the ultimate thing that actually made me make this decision was something else, which I won’t write about now but probably will quite soon. 
  4. My fazas and generally my faza life. The past year or so, my faza life has been very… well, weird, chaotic, tumultuous… I don’t really want to get into the details, plus it wouldn’t be fitting for this particular post because it would take up most of it, and I don’t really have enough distance to it to be able to write about it publicly like that at this point, but things have been really weird and a little confusing sometimes I’d say, and both good and bad. But this week has been pretty good faza-wise, if very intense, and I wonder if perhaps things won’t be becoming more stable from now on. I’d quite like that finally. 😀 ANyway, I got a massive peak on Gwil this week totally out of nowhere, and you regular people on here know that a peak is a great thing and works like the best natural antidepressant for me, so having a peak means I’m doing really well mood wise. No spectacular highs like peaks cause sometimes, just a serene, calm sort of happy feeling. 
  5. My Apple Watch. My Apple Watch may not be the most useful of my devices like my iPhone or Mac or PlexTalk, it doesn’t really bring anything extremely new to my life or its quality or whatever, but I just like it. This week I attempted to sleep with it for several nights to see how accurate its sleep tracking is, in particular sleep stages. I didn’t expect much because I didn’t believe a device like that could be reliable at all in tracking something as elusive as sleep, and because my Mum was saying it didn’t work too well and seemed very random to her, and claimed that it can only track your sleep during the scheduled sleep time, so if your alarm goes off and you’ll just turn it off and go back to sleep it won’t notice it. Well, my experience with sleep tracking seems to be better than my Mum’s. As far as I can tell, it’s oddly accurate. It knows very well more or less when I fall asleep, even if I fall asleep before my scheduled sleep time starts, and it knows quite precisely when I wake up, and it’s not because I use the Apple Watch right when I wake up, because even when I do check the time when I wake up I usually do it on the PlexTalk out of sheer habit. I obviously can’t objectively verify the accuracy of the sleep stages thing, but again, as far as I can tell, it’s pretty good. Like last night I kept waking all the freaking time and felt like I was sleeping very lightly, it did show that my sleep was very fragmented and I got only half an hour of deep sleep. After I let Misha out at half past four and went back to bed, I remember having a lot of dreams and Apple Watch said I kept switching between REM and core sleep pretty much til I woke up at almost 11 AM, and I remember having a very vivid dream right before I woke up and woke up with a raging headache, and Apple Watch says I woke up from REM sleep. Apparently it’s a thing to get headaches when you suddenly wake up from REM sleep like that. Also because I fell asleep at half past two last night and then didn’t really get the best quality sleep, I still felt very sleepy by the time my alarm went off at 8. I tried to snooze it, but must have done something differently than I originally wanted because Apple Watch turned off the alarm completely, while still staying in sleep mode and it knew that I was sleeping. So my Mum was definitely not right that it will only log sleep during the schedule, although I guess Apple Watches are still unaware of such a thing as naps. So yeah, overall I’m quite positively surprised and, who knows, maybe I’ll end up sleeping with my Apple Watch every night, after all. Not that knowing the sleep stages gives me anything really, but it can be just good to know. I’m also very curious if it’ll notice anything weird during my sleep paralysis. I already had it once with the Apple Watch on, but it was past my set sleep time schedule and I didn’t know yet that you can prolong it like I did today, so it wasn’t tracking my sleep. It was very helpful though because as I was in sleep paralysis, at some point I got an email, so my Apple Watch vibrated and I woke up. Which, while we’re at it, makes me also very grateful to the email sender, although I don’t remember who that was anymore. 😀 
  6.    Speaking of Apple – apple pie! 😀 – My Mum made one last weekend and we ate it during the week, but we couldn’t eat it all so in the end Mum had to freeze it. It was very yummy though. 
  7. And speaking of sleep, that dream I had earlier this week. That was really ridiculously hilarious. And yes, I find myself really liking the name Helenor. The next gem stone I get is going to be named Helenor (for all the new people here, I give names that I like to my gem stones because I don’t plan on having children and even if I did, many of the names I like are unusable for children). 
  8. My fluffy overalls that I got from Mum a couple years ago. She made them for me and they’re very warm and comfy and I love wearing them when it’s relatively cool weather like it’s been recently. 

Noticeable Welsh progress this week. I wonder if it isn’t the aforementioned faza peak doing this to me, because I haven’t really been doing anything any different than last week or the week before. The power of peaks. 😂 Anyway, I really appreciate it because while my Norwegian learning has been mostly a stroll in the park because of Swedish, Welsh, with all the related excitement and my feelings for it, has been quite an uphill struggle compared with my other languages, so even the smallest leaps of progress are very much valued by Bibielz. And Welsh-language music. Even now I’m listening to Blas Folk Radio Cymru and I’m really grateful that there are ways for people like me who live someplace completely different to also discover music in minority languages. 

  1. Chips for lunch yesterday. Mum was trying some new experimental recipe for chips, which didn’t sound all that good to me from the beginning, and eventually we both agreed that they turned out quite crappy, but then my Mum made «normal» chips, and these, as always, were very good. Good chips always deserve appreciation. 

   So, that’s my gratitude list. How about your thankfuls? What nice things have happened to you this week? 🙂 

Question of the day.

   What made you smile or cry today? 

   My answer: 

   I don’t remember when was the last time I cried, but something did already make me smile today, namely a super crazy but fun dream I had. I had actually pretty rotten sleep last night. Perhaps it was because I decided I’d try to sleep with my Apple Watch out of curiosity and perhaps the novelty of it made my sleep shallow or something. I fell asleep a bit after midnight so not too bad, but I didn’t really feel like I was sleeping at all, just at some point realised that it’s almost 3 AM and that someone is taking a shower (you can hear basically everything that’s going on in the bathroom from my room and in particular when the water’s running in the shower). I was really surprised because everyone was at home sleeping when I went to bed so I thought it was a bit odd that someone decided to get up in the middle of the night and have a shower. My brain started running 1000 miles a minute as I was thinking what might have happened, and then when the person got out of the shower, I realised it was my Dad, ‘cause I heard him sneezing. In fact once he started sneezing, he kept sneezing for ages, and then sniffling and making other weird noises, including such that actually made the alarms in my brain go off ‘cause it sounded kind of like vomit. So obviously I could sleep no more. Then I heard him go downstairs so I texted him if he’s okay and what’s up, but he wouldn’t respond. After a while I heard him go out and start up the lorry so obviously I figured he was going to work, but that still didn’t explain the middle-of-the-night shower as he usually doesn’t do that if he has to get up at night for work. Usually when he has work early in the morning and late at night and I’m not sleeping, I text him to wish him a nice journey or something, as he usually sits in the lorry for some time before driving off to fill out paperwork and stuff, and he says he likes that and it makes his day better, so I texted him again wishing him a pleasant day, and this time he did reply «Thanks Bibiel» but didn’t reply to the first message. Eventually I figured that perhaps he got a bit of a cold or something and tried my best to convince myself that what I heard wasn’t gagging or vomit, and was successful, but was already too wide awake to fall asleep. 

   Instead, I decided to go to my Brainworld and spent there the whole morning, pretty much until eight. That was the first thing that made me smile, I often smile when I’m in my Brainworld, and last night I mostly really enjoyed myself in there.

   But then when my alarm went off I actually realised I had totally no energy and didn’t feel like getting up at all, and felt a migraine coming. Sleep felt like a dangerous idea as well, because after such a break in between sleeps I would be running a huge risk of getting into the sleep paralysis world. But I felt so tired that I gave into it, took some pain killers, set another alarm for 10, and drifted off to sleep. I indeed did end up landing right in front of «Ian» from my sleep paralysis world, and the first fifteen or so minutes of my sleep were very unpleasant, but this time it was more just because of all the unpleasant physical sensations I get from sleep paralysis and a general sense of fear and discomfort rather than because of any particularly scary content of those dreams. Even though I set another alarm to wake me up, I forgot to turn on Do Not Disturb on my Apple Watch, which in this case turned out to be a great thing, because after some time of being in sleep paralysis, I got an email, so my Apple Watch vibrated and I woke up. I was even more tired now from sleep paralysis and promptly fell asleep again but this time in a proper way. 

   I totally ignored the alarm and kept sleeping past ten, even though it wasn’t really the best quality sleep I guess, sleep after sleep paralysis is usually not, but something’s better than nothing. I also had lots of weird dreams, but it’s only the last one, the one that made me smile when I recalled it after waking up, that deserves attention and that I really remember vividly and so can describe in detail. 

   I dreamt that I lived in some sort of collective dwelling  place for lots of people, like a kind of institution, I have no idea what it might have been but perhaps some sort of long-term lodging place. It had loads of single rooms and it had a reception and if someone wanted to see you in there, there was a whole procedure for them to go through of filling out lots of papers and stuff. So perhaps it was more like a prison? 😀 I was staying in my room and then the receptionist called me and told me excitedly that I had very special visitors, that I’m supposed to be measured for a dress that I’m going to be wearing for a very special occasion. Almost as soon as she said that, the door to my room opened and in came a middle-aged lady and a teenage boy. And it was the lady that was most interesting and that I remember the most vividly. She introduced herself to me as Helenor (my favourite name of the year now probably 😁 ) and was very warm and open, though also very eccentric. But what I found particularly striking about her was her way of speaking. She spoke to me in English, and she had an accent that was the quirkiest possible mix of ridiculously hardcore exaggerated BBC English with an unmistakable hint of North Welsh accent, with rolled «r’s» and strong plosives and the characteristic u’s so it sounded kind of  rough in combination really, but she was also extremely sing-songy and had a sort of inflection that is more South Welsh rather than a North Welsh thing, which added some mildness, and she had a very rich contralto and went up and down in pitch a lot as she spoke. She enunciated all her words extremely clearly and had some really peculiar style of speaking as well, using kind of weird vocab and expressing herself in a funny way, like she kept referring to me as «Bibielle sweeting» all the time. I also had Misha in that place with me and when they came in, he was laying on the bed and she came over to stroke him at some point and was something like: «Misha, oh Misha, such a lavish fur. What a splendid colour! Unrivalled thickness! These gleaming eyes of yours! Verily bewitching!» And  stuff like that and she could talk all the time. In hindsight, I wonder if her awe regarding Misha’s fur was because she thought it would be great for a coat.

   The boy that accompanied her was Polish and I remember that his name was something like Dawid or Dominik though I have no idea where I know it from because she never referred to him by name and he seemed awfully shy and hardly spoke. This Helenor lady turned out to be some kind of seamstress, and she went to the trouble of making several different dresses for me and decided to check if any of them actually suits me only after she was done with making them. And the Dawid/Dominik boy was like her assistant or something, carrying stuff after her, picking up her needles and reminding her things that she forgot to do which seemed to be a very regular occurrence. Like I said he was extremely shy and seemed to be even afraid to speak louder, but at the same Time he didn’t seem to like his job at all and as he stood in the corner and Waited for Helenor to be done with me I heard him sighing theatrically all the time as if this was the most boring day of his life. She, meanwhile, was super enthusiastic about her job, to the point that I guess it must have been a bit infectious, because while I normally hate things like trying on clothes and stuff like that, but this time round I totally didn’t mind. All the dresses that she brought me were in a bit different styles, but they were all extremely elegant and fancy and old-fashioned, like ball gowns, one actually had something that I suppose must have been a crinoline. 

   At some point it finally dawned on me that I had no clue why I’d even need such a ball dress, so I asked Helenor if she knew what all that was about. And she happily explained to me that, basically, the whole idea was hers, and that she herself picked me as the most suitable to attend the ball, and that it was a ball of the fairies and trolls and elves «And you shall be away with the fairies, Bibielle sweeting» – she giggled. – 

   Eventually Helenor decided on a dress that suited me best, and I liked it a lot too. It was long but very airy and light and frilly and made of muslin and Helenor said it was purple. But then she got concerned and said that it’s probably too light and that I’d need to have some warmer outer garment as well and she went on and on how otherwise I might freeze and then she’ll be the one held accountable by the fairies so I assumed it was very likely that I could actually freeze there and she blamed herself in a very dramatic way and despaired over how she hadn’t thought about making me a coat as well. So she ordered Dawid Dominik to fetch all the spare coats that she’d made, I don’t know from where he fetched them and if he really had to carry all the clothes that Helenor has made just in case they could end up being useful. So then Helenor wanted me to try all the coats, and eventually settled on one made of rabbit fur. It was really cute and so soft and fluffy and even had a hood and huge deep pockets, and then she generously offered me her very own rabbit muff, though I didn’t really need it with such huge pockets in the coat.

   She kept oohing and aching about that rabbit coat and how well it looked on me, and went on and on and on about all kinds of things very chaotically in that peculiar accent of hers, and then was suddenly interrupted by the Dawid Dominik boy, who uttered a very loud moan. She turned to him, and he seemed to show her something and point at it and whispered something very agitatedly but I couldn’t understand a word. But Helenor seemed to do, because she got really alarmed or anxious. She quickly grabbed my arm and dragged me into the corner of the room where the boy stood, she switched a light on and they both seemed to inspect something very closely, but I was not sure what it was, which made me feel anxious too. At first I thought they were assessing me up-close like that, and wondered whether perhaps something happened to me suddenly if it caused so much agitation, like, dunno, perhaps I myself suddenly changed into a troll or grown another head or whatever. But the more they looked and debated between themselves in hushed voices and pointed at something the more I started to think that perhaps it’s something in my room. Is there a pile of shit lying somewhere or is it infested by mice or what? I felt more and more uncomfortable not knowing what was going on. And then suddenly Helenor shrieked on what I would assume must have been the top of her lungs: «Jesus Christ help me!» and just disappeared, and Dawid Dominik, dresses, coats and the muff with her. I was speechless and wondered wtf happened, all the more anxiously that I felt I was waking up and I might never know what was the deal with Helenor. Then, as I was already one food in the waking world, someone opened the door of the dream room. It was someone who worked in that place I lived in. She sat on the bed and was like: «So, how did lady Helenor’s visit go? Did she find the right dress for you?» I thought perhaps she’d be able to explain the mystery to me so I told her everything, but she just said something like: «Oh, that’s a pity. But in this case she probably won’t ever come back». I wanted to know why and everything but then I woke up for good and it was 1 PM. 

   I was really amused by that dream once I was able to think clearly, I love it when my brain creates vivid characters like that and then when I wake up I wish they were real. I often try to imagine them again consciously and get them into my Brainworld and I definitely want to do that with Helenor, she’ll be making clothes for Magnus, Nerissa and his children (Magnus and Nerissa are my imaginary sea people who help real people feel happy, and Helenor will fit in their castle perfectly). And where the flip does my brain get such random plot scenarios? It also occurred to me that, while Helenor was so concerned with my not having a coat, she was seemingly oblivious to the fact that I had no appropriate ball shoes. But perhaps fairies dance bare-footed. 😀 

   So, how about you? What made you smile today? Or what made you cry? 🙂 

Question of the day (7th October).

   This question is overdue for yesterday, but feel free to answer it in regards to either today or yesterday or whenever you’re reading it. 

   How has your day been? 

   My answer: 

   I’d say today has been quite decent. I really overslept though, so it feels like it’s been a pretty short day. Right now I’m in a phase where I fall asleep around 1-3 AM, even though I actually do feel kind of sleepy/tired much earlier but at the same time my brain can’t shut down or something, and then I naturally sleep for around 12 hours. I always have an alarm set to 8, which I don’t have to get up or even wake up for if I really don’t feel like it, although generally that’s what I do usually try to aim for to have a bit of a structure regarding my messy sleep-wake cycle and I like being able to wake up around that time, but even when I don’t and I’m pretty sure I won’t do it the next day, I still have it just to have some sort of sense of time. But the last couple of days I’ve been oversleeping my alarms completely and when I wake up I can’t even recall ever hearing or switching them off. And it’s not as easy with my phone to switch an alarm off on autopilot without waking up at all even for a few seconds, because at night I have music or radio going from the iPhone via my Bluetooth speaker, and VoiceOver doesn’t like Bluetooth speakers because it always yells through the phone speaker at max volume whenever it has to say something at the same time as the speaker starts or stops playing, and it’s impossible working around that bug. So when my alarm goes off, the speaker stops playing for a while, and when I switch the alarm off, VoiceOver starts babbling on about notifications and whatever and the speaker starts playing again so VoiceOver yells at me. I always silence it as quickly as possible so that no one wakes up in case someone is still sleeping, but yeah, the point is that it’s impossible not to notice that unless you’re so sleepy that it’s more like some other altered state or manage to silence VoiceOver on autopilot just in the right second before it starts yelling. So, my little theory is that the problem isn’t me, but my Apple Watch might be messing something up. It’s not really founded in anything other than that I heard my alarm go off only once over the whole time that I’ve had it, and I usually charge it overnight, during which time you can’t use it, so perhaps it thinks that if I’m charging and not using it, I don’t need the alarm either, be it on the watch or the phone. I hope my sleep patterns change some time soon so I’ll be able to verify if that’s true. Anyway, because of that alarm thing I only woke up after 1 AM and was quite horrified with my lack of moderation. 😀 I mean it’s one thing to fall asleep late but sleeping 12 hours?! Not that it doesn’t happen a lot to me but I usually don’t like it very much unless I have fun dreams or am depressed so sleep is the best thing in the world but otherwise it feels like I’m being totally lazy. I can’t imagine having a normal job with such habits, lol. 

   After I woke up, I did all the usual things most people do after waking up, except I had lunch for breakfast, as Mum was already making it when I got up. 😀 Then I talked for a bit with my Mum, and then Misha called me ‘cause he was already in my room and wanted to go to sleep but he won’t go to sleep without his usual routine, and he can’t do his usual routine by himself. So I gave him snack and then he laid on Bibiel for a couple minutes and had a quick ear massage, and then moved onto his sheep skin and fell asleep till 7 PM and made lovely sleep noises. 

   I then did my usual weekend Norwegian learning session for an hour and then some Welsh reading that I didn’t manage to do during the week for about 20 minutes. After that I read today’s Mass from the Latin missal which I do every day like Mum and Sofi, and then prayed the Rosary for an hour. I normally only pray one part of Rosary daily or sometimes less frequently than that, which lasts only fifteen minutes, but since October is the month that is especially devoted to praying Rosary, and because I’m having a sort of intensive prayer time since last Thursday for two weeks as I’m praying for someone important to me, I figured I’ll at least try to challenge myself a bit more and pray the whole Rosary every day for at least those two weeks. 

   Misha was very quiet for all that time and lay sweetly on his sheep skin, so after that I couldn’t resist and laid down for a while with him and we had a bit of a cuddle time and I read a book meanwhile. I’m now reading a book about the visions of Anne Catherine Emmerich concerning the lives of Jesus and Mary as well as Jesus’ Passion, I guess it must be in English as well but I’m reading it in Polish and don’t know what it’s called in English. I don’t think this whole book can be treated as her authentic visions, because it was written by a German poet Clemens Brentano based on her words, but it’s been said that he could have likely added a lot of details into that to make the descriptions of everything feel richer and more in-depth, and even without knowing that it seems kind of weird that someone would have such detailed visions of what people’s houses looked like or what plants grew in Palestina etc. etc, I mean it’s interesting but not relevant spiritually. 😀 Still, it doesn’t contain anything that would be contradictory with teaching of the Church and I just treat it as a sort of very religious and soul-enriching historical novel inspired by Jesus’ life and Passion that can help one’s imagination a bit when, for example, reflecting on the mysteries of Rosary, rather than a super factual account of what Jesus’ and Mary’s lives were like and that everything that is said in this book necessarily had to happen exactly like it’s described and that Jesus seriously said all that he does in this book. I’m really enjoying it overall, though it’s super long, so even though I tend to be a very fast reader, I’m chewing through it very slowly, because I started it a week ago and am still barely 30-something percent into it. 

   After that it was already well after 4 PM, and I checked my emails and all the other stuff that needed checking, and then wrote in my diary, which also took me quite a while because I didn’t yesterday so had a lot of stuff to get out of my brain. In the meantime my Dad’s colleague visited. He hadn’t visited my Dad in ages but he got divorced very recently and now he seems to have finally remembered where all his colleagues live and visits everyone to share his woes. Sofi also came back from our grandparents’ and we chatted for a while and she played a bit with Misha but he was super sleepy so not much of a playmate and soon went back to sleep. But now Misha is up and crying downstairs ‘cause Mummy has disappeared somewhere outside and he’s upset. 

   How about you? 🙂 

Question of the day.

   How are you really? 

   My answer: 

   Pretty neutral I’d say. Okay overall. Didn’t get much good sleep as for some odd reason I had really annoying  tinnitus that wouldn’t go away pretty much until morning and it kept waking me up and was really frustrating. This is definitely not something that would be a regular thing for me so I got a bit worried and wondered whether it’s going to stay like this for longer-term, but it’s fully gone now so seems like it must have been just quite random. And I was really cold all night on top of that and couldn’t warm myself even with the hot water bottle, so I’m sure you know what it’s like to sleep when you’re cold meanwhile. But despite little sleep I don’t really feel sleepy or anything so I don’t really have a problem with it. 

   Also I’m still feeling a little bit excited about what my Mum and I did recently. I think I have mentioned to you that my Mum was thinking about possibly buying herself an Apple Watch, because now that she has an iPhone she often gets a bit nervous when she goes running or cycling and when someone calls or texts her, ‘cause she has to take the phone out and she’s worried that one day she’ll drop it and it’ll break, and I guess it must be just a little cumbersome replying to someone while cycling. Plus, she couldn’t find a good enough app for herself on iPhone for tracking kilometres that wouldn’t at the same time ooze with gentle toxicity and try to get her into the rivalling mode, yelling at her to share her «achievements» with friends or to break her records or whatever shit like that, when she just wants to do what she wants and when she wants and simply record the details of her sport activities for herself, she doesn’t do training for the sake of training or losing weight or stuff like that, just ‘cause she likes it. Initially I tried to discourage her from that because I didn’t think that Apple Watch would be much better in that department, it seemed to me, and still does in a way, that perhaps it’s even pushier with that sort of mentality, but Mum said that if it did all the other things well, she can ignore all the bs she doesn’t need like calories. And the more she thought about it the more she liked the idea, saying how Apple Watches look nice and things like that. It took her some time to make up her mind whether it would actually be as useful for her as she thinks, because she’s known for making impulsive decisions on the spur of a moment, and how hers should look, so she would look on Apple Store quite frequently and try to design it for herself so that it would fit her style and be a little different. She changed her mind a lot in the process, sometimes saying she actually doesn’t need it and while it could be fun, it’s not really necessary so why waste the money, and then she would say that actually why not buy something unnecessary for oneself once in a while as she doesn’t do that very often, since she’s on benefits and spends most of her money on Sofi and the only Apple Watch she was considering was the new SE 2 as she couldn’t afford anything more than that anyway. And finally last Saturday she made up her mind and stormed into my room saying that she needs to be delivered from constant thinking about it and make the decision once and for all before her mind changes again. 😀 Problem was that she didn’t have enough money on her card at that very moment so asked me if I could buy her the watch and then she’d give me the money back when she got them. So I gave her my phone so that she could choose the right looking Apple Watch, and as she was choosing everything, suddenly a wild thought popped into my mind, and I was all like: «Y’know what? Let’s make a deal! I’ll buy an Apple Watch for you and you’ll buy an Apple Watch for me, when you get the money». That wasn’t really as impulsive an idea as it may seem, I was already thinking a bit about whether Apple Watch might be useful at all for me in any way when Mum was dealing with her dilemma. Last month, I happened to have learned something about myself, or rather about something being a possibility, which I won’t be sharing just yet on here because I don’t have all the info yet ‘cause I’m still in the process of finding out and so I don’t want to prematurely raise any unnecessary emotions or tension or something, but I promise that if I’ll find out that it’s something more than just a possibility, I’ll update y’all on it. But anyway, finding that out made me think that, actually, perhaps an Apple Watch would be useful for me as well indeed. Maybe not as much as for my Mum, and not in the same way because I’m a semi-hermit so my phone generally doesn’t need to worry about being dropped somewhere outside and even when I go somewhere I very rarely take it with me, but it could still be useful if the possibility turns out to be reality, and even if not, I wanted to give it a try regardless. 

   And my Mum was happy with the deal. In fact, she was probably even happier than me. She’s a real chicken with technology so I think it made her feel better that I’ll have an Apple Watch too so I’ll be able to help her out make sense of it because she assumed that I would learn it faster. I think the thing isn’t about fast learning but about me being more inclined to actually sit and read about it, rather than blindly and chaotically try to do something without knowing anything about how to go about it which is how my Mum handles her devices and then it’s all like: «Hmmm, let’s guess what’s broken in the process”. In this situation, Mum really wanted our Apple Watches to arrive together, which was enough of a motivator that she decided on the spot to go transfer the change that she had to her card and then placed the order for my Apple Watch. Aren’t we just crazy people in this house? We got the same ones except my Mum’s is obviously larger, since I have mini hands, and hers is starlight with a red silicone band, whereas mine is silver with a slate blue braided loop band. 

   Our Apple Watches arrived together indeed on Tuesday. When my Mum went to get them from the delivery guy, she later told me that he said (as if Mum didn’t realise) that one package is addressed to «Some Bib-Bi-Bibiel Bibielz) and couldn’t restrain himself from saying that it sounds like an interesting name. Well thanks, it made my day. Yeah, I am a bit ironical, in case you’re wondering. But also I like when people say the word Bibiel out loud so for once I regret that I wasn’t there to hear it. I use Bibiel Bibielz as my Apple ID name ‘cause you obviously use Apple ID in all kinds of situations and I don’t always want some random peeps to know my full name, and don’t bother changing it just because I order something. Perhaps it’s further evidence of craziness. 😀 

   Anyway, we’re pretty happy with our Apple Watches, except I’m super mad at myself because I told my Mum to get herself an Apple Watch with cellular since it made sense if she’s going to use it when running, but I didn’t even think about checking previously whether our carrier even supports it. It seemed like an obvious thing to me that, since Apple Watches have been around for quite a while, duh they must be supported by carriers, right? Except ours does not support Apple Watch. So yeah, that was a fun discovery to make at the beginning for sure. My Mum claims it doesn’t matter ‘cause she has her phone with herself all the time anyway but I think it still sucks big time. But overall our Apple Watches are cool. I still find it kind of amusing that we both have Apple Watches, I never thought that either of us could be that kind of person lol. My Mum even sleeps with hers, but to me it still feels kind of off and I’m skeptical whether it’s actually comfortable. But I think I’ll try to do that at least once in a while ‘cause I’m curious about the sleep phases stuff. I wish it was possible to use apps like Voice Dream Reader or Audible without headphones on it, then perhaps Apple Watch could become a viable alternative for my PlexTalk at night and then it would be a very solid argument for me to get used to sleeping with it. I still hope that Apple will make my dream come true in the future. 

   How about your real feelings? 🙂 

Jackie Oates – “Dream Angus”.

   Hi people! 🙂 

   Last night I couldn’t fall asleep till like 3 AM or so, and one of the songs that played on my Spotify was this one. I’ve always really liked it, because I generally really like Jackie Oates’ music – she’s been one of the first English folk singers that I started listening to when introducing myself to English folk and not just Irish and Scottish – and because I love lullabies and anything to do with dreams and folklore, but also because this song and especially its chorus reminds me so much of Emily of New Moon, and specifically her first novel A Seller of Dreams. I can’t think of this song without thinking of Emily and her novel, and I can’t think of Emily and her novel without hearing this tune in my brain. But yesterday, as I couldn’t sleep and heard this song, I thought how I’d really, seriously appreciate it if Angus was actually a thing. As you may know, practically the whole summer was really difficult for me sleep- and anxiety-wise, with loads of crappy sleep paralysis and scary dreams and stuff like that. So I thought how comforting it would be if you could just buy yourself a dream or two or five for the night ahead, so that you’d know in advance what dreams you’d be having and could fall asleep happily and peacefully. 

   I mentioned to you guys recently how my Mum is possibly getting herself an Apple Watch, and recently when WatchOS 9 came out I looked up its features for her as she was curious. I told her that there is some improvement to how you can track your sleep and she was like: “Oh, cool, it’ll be nice to look back at my dreams”. Obviously she was joking, but I thought that wow, I’d like it if one day we’d be able to do that, if Apple Watch had such a feature it would actually convince me to get it as well. 😀 I’m a very vivid dreamer, but sometimes when you have a lovely dream, the only thing you really remember upon waking is some sort of pleasant emotion, and it would have been nice to just open some app and have a look at what it was exactly what you dreamt about and always have it with you. Or if you wake up with heebiejeebies and don’t know what they’re about, you could also look back and see what the scary thing you dreamt of was and if it feels equally scary while you’re awake or perhaps just totally ridiculous and not worth fretting over. And even if they were scary in the waking world as well, I think that in many situations, looking back through your dream while being able to think rationally and clearly and being more in control of it could be a good way to desensitise yourself to it and make it feel less scary anyway, so it could even be a good therapeutic method perhaps. And so last night when I was listening to Dream Angus, I was suddenly all like: “What if one day we could have a virtual version of Angus?” Like, if you’d have a possibility to look back on your dreams, why not be able to buy dreams somehow, through App Store, Google Play or something? 😀 You’d have like a HUGE collections of dreams to choose from or could even design your very own dreams. I wonder though how these dreams would actually end up in our brains, any ideas, anyone? 

   As for Jackie Oates, I’ve already shared one song by her in the past – The Worthy Wood Carol on Christmas Eve one year – but I don’t think I’d introduced her properly then. Jackie is a singer and fiddle player who was born in Congleton in Cheshire, raised in Staffordshire, and now as far as I’m aware lives in Wallingford in Oxfordshire. This song comes from her 2013 album Lullabies, which s probably my favourite album by her. “Dream Angus” is a traditional Scottish tune, based on the myth of Angus or Aengus, Celtic god of love, dreams and poetic inspiration. Angus was son of Dagda and Boan who could shapeshift, and, just like in this song, he gave lovely, calm dreams to people. He is the equivalent of Mabon from Welsh mythology. In this song we can hear Jackie playing the viola, and she is accompanied by Belinda O’Hooley from O’Hooley and Tidow on piano and by a string section from Iceland. 

Jack Vreeswijk – “Man Borde Inte Sova” (One Should Not Sleep).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   Today I have for you a Swedish song about star gazing. It was written by Swedish author and poet Levi Rickson who wrote under the pen name of Jeremias i Tröstlösa, and set to a tune composed by Gustav Wennerberg. Many contemporary artists have performed this song but the only version I actually like is Jack Vreeswijk’s. Although I have very little to no idea about stars as I’m blind, I do think that night is a very particular time, and sometimes it really is good not to sleep it through when you can. I find it very interesting how I, but also people in general, somehow seem to think in a bit of a different way at night, and feel a lot more creative, think more deeply and feel sort of more open to everything, like if I read something or listen to music it tends to impact me a lot more, and sometimes I get cool ideas. Below is Bibiel’s translation of this song. Actually, the original was apparently written in närkingska (I don’t know what it’s called in English if anything) which is a dialect used in Närke in Sweden, but there’s also a standard Swedish version and that’s the one that Jack sings. 

  One should not sleep when the night falls
For then the stars shine high in the blue sky
It is so quiet and peaceful
It would be wrong to sleep
I walk my paths over plains and through woods
And the stars they follow me so I have company
They say they are a thousand miles and even more away from us
Yet they burn with a steady glow
Yet they blaze like flames
Like silver and crystals
Now their sparks are falling
And an occasional one keeps flickering when it has burnt out
So when she falls, it’s like a streak of smoke in the end
One can never dream so finely and wonderfully
Like the night itself appears then when stars are shining clearly
It is as if it could be heard
Like a silver game that moves
One should not sleep when the night falls
One should look at the stars, and one should be two

Plu – “Nos Da Nawr” (Goodnight Now).

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   For today, I have a lovely little children’s lullaby for you, from Plu’s album called Holl Anifeiliaid y Goedwig (All Animals of the Forest). As far as I can tell, this lullaby is about what various animals do before bedtime and how they prepare for sleep. 

Question of the day.

   What are some things you do to cope with stress that aren’t really productive, but not really unhealthy either? 

   My answer: 

   I guess one such thing that comes to my mind and that fulfills these criteria is sleep. If I feel really stressed, or depressed, for that matter, or anything shitty like that, and can sleep, I will usually happily jump at the chance to shut my brain down even for a little while. Sleep is one of the best methods of escapism, imo, but it sure isn’t particularly productive. Unless you happen to have a dream that gives you a solution to whatever is stressing you out, or the stress is only a matter of time and when you sleep some time through, you’ll wake up in a better, less stressful world. I’ve heard that too much sleep can be similarly unhealthy as too little sleep (I’m actually really curious why, because with too little sleep it’s obvious, but I’d like to know what exactly goes wrong when you sleep too much and why) but I suppose that compared to various other maladaptive ways in which people, including myself, try to cope with stress, oversleeping is probably relatively harmless. 

   How about you? 🙂 

Question of the day.

   What is human kind’s greatest invention? 

   My answer: 

   Bed! Every time I think about what a great thing bed is, I’m reminded of the Six Bullerby Children/The Children of Noisy Village by Astrid Lindgren and how they once got an idea to sleep in a haystack. Then they woke up very early in the morning and were freezing and went back home, had hot milk and buns and went to their own beds, and Lisa – from whose perspective the book is written – said that it must have been someone very wise who invented the bed, because it’s indeed so much better to sleep in a bed than in a haystack. While I never slept in a haystack, I totally agree with her. Sure it can be fun and exciting sleeping somewhere like a haystack or a matress or a sleeping bag or some really weird places where people can sleep, but nowhere is as comfortable as a bed, especially if it’s your own bed. I wonder how those people who invented the bed even knew that it’s going to be the best place to sleep in before it was even a tangible thing and before they could try it out for real? 😀 Anyway, I’m really grateful that someone had such a brilliant idea ages ago, so that now we can sleep as comfortably as we do. And I think double beds are a particularly amazing invention, especially if you can have one all for yourself like I do. 

   Your turn. 🙂 

Song of the day (18th April) – Nadia Birkenstock – “Dors, Dors, Enfant Cheri) (Sleep, Sleep, Dear Child).

   This lovely harp piece arranged and played by Nadia Birkenstock is a lullaby. I love loads of lullabies, and this one is no exception. As far as I know, this one originates from Alsace. 

Nadia Birkenstock – “Dors, Dors, Enfant Cheri”.

 

Llio Rhydderch – “Gorweddwch Eich Hun – Sleep Your Slumber”.

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Today I have a lovely Welsh triple harp piece for you from Llio Rhydderch. I think the English translation of the title isn’t meant to be literal, or perhaps it’s not even meant to be a translation of the title but simply a subtitle or something like that, because as far as I know gorwedd in Welsh means to lie, as in to lie down, whereas eich hun means yourself, in a formal way. So I would translate it as something like Lay [Yourself] Down or something similar. But Sleep Your SLumber sounds a lot better, and it gives you an idea about it anyway. 

Question of the day (11th February).

   If you had two more hours every day (a twenty-six-hour day), what would you do with the extra time? 

   My answer: 

   Right now, I’d say sleep. For the last week I’ve been feeling freakishly under-sleeped (lol, is that an actual word or my neologism? Is it even grammatically correct? 😀 Now that I wrote it I feel like it should be “under-slept”, if anything, but “under-slept” sounds like it doesn’t mean exactly what I want, and under-sleeped sounds just aesthetically better, so under-sleeped it is). I don’t know why. I guess I’ve been sleeping a healthy/normal amount of time or more than that, but no matter how much I sleep I still wake up sleepy and actually tired. Once I get up and my brain boots properly (which process normally tends to be long but now it’s been taking ages)  I no longer feel so sleepy, but getting myself to actually wake up and get up in such sleepified state is difficult. And even though once I get going I do not feel particularly sleepy or tired, I’m sure that if I laid down for just about fifteen minutes, I’d be out. Those of you who are regular here probably know that my sleep cycle and amount of sleep my brain needs shifts a lot, but this feels different somehow and I don’t think it’s solely down to my unpredictable circadian rhythm. I don’t know, my Mum’s sick with something again, so maybe I’ve picked it up too but my system is trying to literally sleep it out before I could develop any symptoms or anything? The night before last I didn’t even hear Misha crying to let him out, but thankfully Olek was getting up for work so he did. I normally always hear Misha because I’m so used to it and even when I don’t consciously, I still do, and I let him out while still sleeping. Not that it would be a huge disaster if Misha had to wait a while, but things like that are stressful for him and he’s already a ball of nerves so I’d rather avoid situations like that if I can, and he’s not as direct as most cats that he’ll go on the bed and nudge me or something if I don’t react to his meowing, he’ll just continue to stand by the door and cry, unless there’s a real crisis ahead like pee). So yeah, perhaps having two more hours in the day that I could use for sleep would put me back on the right sleep track. Realistically, we’d probably run into a problem that my circadian rhythm would go even more nuts with twenty-six-hour-long days, but who knows, maybe it would actually suit my internal clock better? 

   How about you? 🙂 

Question of the day.

What time of day does your energy level start to decrease?

My answer:

It’s actually nothing fixed for me, since my whole circadian rhythm likes to shift around a lot, so it can vary a fair bit, also depending on how I’m doing mentally and all sorts of things. But, very generally, as I think I’m more of a night owl, at least by default, I think I can say that for me it’s more like I tend to start with low energy levels and then they keep increasing. It usually takes my brain some time to get going when I wake up, and I’m also kind of physically sluggish in the mornings as well a lot of the time. It’s not because I tend not to have refreshing sleep though of course this can vary too, I guess my brain is simply the kind that takes its time to boot and I tend to have low blood pressure, and I guess the dysthymia may also have something to do with this. Coffee used to be extremely helpful with this, but now that it’s started to give me really bad anxiety, I can no longer rely on it so I have to use other things that are less effective but eventually my brain will get going on its own, it’ll simply take longer. If I’m peopling a lot during the day then my energy will be draining a lot faster. Currently (that is for about a week) my sleep/wake cycle has been pretty messy and I sleep A LOT, and I can’t even really put my finger on why it’s so because I can’t say I feel tired or sleepy, but once I do fall asleep I just can’t stop sleeping. I purposefully went to sleep very early last night wanting to hopefully wake up reasonably early yet give my brain time to sleep if it needs it so badly, but despite I fell asleep at like 10 PM I woke up after 11 AM! I didn’t even hear my alarm go off earlier in the morning and must have turned it off in my sleep. 😀 The other night I slept through a whopping 15 hours. Sofi managed to come back from school and I was still sleeping! Such things do happen sometimes so it’s absolutely not abnormal in Bibielland, or, in any case, not extraordinary, but I’m not a fan of it unless I’m really depressed and thus really escapist and sleep feels like the only way to live or when I have super cool dreams but lately it’s been meh where dreams are concerned. But at least I do feel rested after this sleep, so it’s not like it’s all wasted time, and things will probably shift in a few days anyway. So the way it is right now I also tend to start with lower energy that increases over time. But sometimes it can just as well be so that I wake up insanely early, say 3 AM even, and feel very energised, and then my energy will start to decrease around early afternoon.

How is it with you? 🙂

Song of the day (20th September) – The Chieftains ft. Maire Brennan – “Lullaby for the Dead”.

Hey people! 🙂

I thought I’d share this beautiful, very sad, Irish lullaby with you. I like a lot of lullabies and I love how Irish Celtic folk music is so full of lullabies. This one is soulfully sung by, probably well-known by now to the readers of this blog, Maire/Moya Brennan from Clannad, Enya’s sister, who is accompanied by the very popular Celtic music band from Dublin – The Chieftains – who were formed in the 60’s during the Celtic music revival in Ireland and often collaborate with other well-known Irish folk musicians.

Question of the day.

What is your favourite word in the English vocabulary?

My answer:

I honestly wouldn’t be able to pick just one, in any language that I like. There are too many words I like and I like them in different ways, so it’s kinda like asking a child who she loves more, mummy or daddy. But I did decide to pick one word, just for the sake of this post.

When talking about favourite words, people often focus on the really sophisticated, long ones, or the particularly weird or funny slang words that they like, or some swear words that they find particularly useful, expressive and/or versatile. But people rarely talk about the really mundane, common words that are used on a daily basis. Perhaps they’re less thought about because they’re so rare, or perhaps no one likes them? So I decided to talk about one really mundane, simple English word that I LOVE very much, and perhaps part of why I love it so much is this simplicity. This word is sleep. No language out of those I know has a better word for the thing! The word sleep just says it all and encompasses everything about what sleep is. And it sounds so insanely cute. I like saying it. It’s so calm, peaceful and fluffy, like a sleeping baby, better even, like a sleeping kitten. In a tactile way, it feels really nice too. It’s also round and… not quite fluffy, because it’s made of something hard, metal I think, but it’s small and cute. And gustatorily it tastes like walnuts. The Polish word for sleep – sen –
feels insanely bland and flat in comparison. Plus at the same time it also means dream, not like a daydream but specifically the dream you get while you’re asleep, so it’s also not very logical because they’re too different things even if they occur together. If I’m Polish and it’s illogical to me, I guess it must be all the more illogical for non-native speakers. 😀 So mostly when I see the word sen without any context, I think dream, not sleep. It’s also cheesy, because synaesthetically it feels and tastes like cheese, perhaps because cheese is ser so it’s just one letter’s difference. And it’s not even good quality cheese in this case, it tastes kind of artificial. The Polish verb for to sleep is spać, and it’s also very boring, even more so actually, but I’m a big fan of some of its conjugations. Like the imperative form of this verb is śpij (SHPEEY) and that sounds so much better. Or you can ask someone “Śpisz?” (SHPEESh) (Are you asleep?). I wish the infinitive form was śpić, not spać, it would sound more like what it actually means. The Swedish sömn is way too heavy for a healthy kind of sleep, like you’re sleeping on particularly strong sleeping pills or something, or like you’re drunk and when you finally wake up, whenever that might be, you’ll be mightily hungover. Much like I always end up on Hydroxyzine. 😀 And the Welsh cwsg (COOSK) is really nice but too light in turn and just not enough personality (which is rare with Welsh words but here it’s just how it is), so like sleeping with no dreams and waking up at every smallest rustle. Sleep is just right. It’s the kind of healthy, peaceful sleep from which you wake up rested, happy and refreshed, and looking forward to when you can go to sleep again, but not because you’re sleepy or have nothing better to do, it’s just a nice state to be in.

What’s yours? 🙂