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My Sleeping Disorder

Unlike the vast majority of my friends, I’ve never gotten a DUI. This is not to say I’m not a heavy drinker. I contribute this anomaly to my willingness to pass out anywhere and everywhere. A couch, a love seat, recliner, hardwood floor, truck bed. These are not only satisfactory places to lay my head when I’m drunk, but lofty promises that will surely close a deal if I’m on the fence about attending a local house party. In very rare occasions I have slept in such situations as: a neighbors front lawn, a rooftop, a stairway, and a restaurant booth.

Among all these situations there is one I deem unacceptable. Or, shall I say, unsleepable. This is the sharing of the bed. When I shared a one bedroom hotel room with my friend Nick recently, I chose to sleep on the floor every night. I would rather have a hard cold carpet all to myself than a king sized bed that I need to share with someone else. It’s not a homophobic thing, although I wish I could say it was it. That would probably make the situation easier.

When I’m in a bed with a girl I feel this overwhelming anxiety of being confined to an imaginary space. Its like I’m playing a game of operation and I cant make any sudden movements or I’ll get zapped. If I doze off and accidentally place my arm around her it will lead into an unwanted spooning or cuddling session. She embraces my arm touching her and takes it as an invitation to nudge herself into my personal safety zone. I slowly roll back trying to escape the situation and she shimmy’s her body closer and closer. Soon it’s her and I crammed on the edge of a bed with an empty space that could fit four more people. I look to my right and stare at a carpeted floor that looks glorious and uninhabited. I fantasize about jumping down and spreading my arms and legs like it’s the first snowfall of the season and I’m in a snow angel making contest. I look back at the figure snoring next to me and grimace at the situation I’ve put myself in.

Wide awake, wedged between a three foot drop to the floor and 140 pounds of dead weight. I open my eyes, stare at the ceiling and think to myself “I’ve lived a good life, never harmed or tortured small animals, what have I done to deserve this?”

Quietly I wait for a response but there is none. I involuntarily let out a sigh and wake up the girl next to me. “Psssst” . . “hey” . . “HEY” . . “can you umm . . scoot over a bit?” . . “uuhhmm . . babe?”

Here’s where the problem arises. I don’t know exactly what goes on in a girls head but they all seem to do this move. They give some sort of a mumble or sigh to show they understand and then they move to the center of the bed. Meaning, there is the middle of the bed, plus the width of you in that middle, plus the inch or two I would like apart from you, leaving me still crammed on one side of the bed and a good 3 to 4 feet of unused space on the other side. Married couples have sides of the bed right? What if we’ve been married for 5 years and one night I just jumped on to the center of the bed and said, “night honey”. You’d be pissed right?

Now I’m stuck again in a confined space. A roll to the left and I go through the same dance I just got myself out of. A roll to the right and I’m on the floor. I am trapped in this tiny little bed prison I’ve made for myself. Every position change or movement has to be carefully thought out and executed. The best thing I can compare it to is that feeling you get when you climb into the backseat of a small car you know you’re going to be in for a while. Or when you sit down in an airplane and buckle your seatbelt. After about 10 minutes all you can think about is leaning your seat all the way back, lifting your legs up in the air and doing about 20 bicycle kicks in a row. Or standing up straight, spreading your arms as wide as they can go and then spinning yourself around like a helicopter.

After a bad nights sleep I drag myself to work and dream of the apartment and bed I will have all to myself in 8 hours. I finally get home, watch some television and crawl into bed. I lay wide awake unable to sleep and am suddenly overcome with a feeling of loneliness. I close my eyes and think how nice it would be to be sharing this all with a wonderful girl. Then I look up at the ceiling and think to myself “I’ve lived a good life, never harmed or tortured small animals, what have I done to deserve this?”

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