Yesterday I did something that, today, I still don't know quite how I feel about. I went to a hypnotist.
After my little meltdown last week, a friend suggested I go to the same person that he had seen. Now, I have seen this friend make huge strides in his life and have been so happy that he has managed to find a place for himself that he is not only happy in, but also thriving in. So the voice inside my head - the rational one, not the crazy one - figured that it couldn't hurt to try what he did.
The session was an hour and a half long, most of which was background. Background for me about what would be happening and what to expect, and background for him on me and my particular quirks, foibles, and hoped for outcomes. The last 35 minutes or so was the actual hypnosis.
Now, I have to say that I didn't feel anything specifically change within my awareness - I was conscious the whole time, and I simply felt that I was relaxed and allowing myself to listen. So, that was a little different to my expectation. I thought that I would fall asleep - or black out sections - or something. I was told that this session was to work on the general pillars of calm, relaxation, good sleep, control, and something else that I have already forgotten, and that next session would go more specifically into the things that I wanted to address.
On 'awaking', I did seem to have a silly smile plastered on my face. I don't really know where that came from, but it was undeniably there. I did feel good. (I crashed a bit later that afternoon and desperately wanted a nap at about 4:30, but I left his office feeling rested.)
I do know that there is no such thing as an immediate or magical fix to all of life's problems and the myriad of issues that have been hardwired into my brain over the last 34 years, but I have to admit that I was wondering how/if the session would manifest in my everyday life. Well, I didn't have to wait long.
Last night was one of the most peculiar experiences I have had in terms of sleep patterns and how an interrupted sleep has affected me. Uncommonly, I woke up at least three times during the night. Once I got out of bed to go to the bathroom, but the other two times I stayed in bed and simply tried to go back to sleep. Other than the fact that I don't usually wake that often, my almost instant awareness during those periods was definitely strange to me.
Usually, on the rare occasion that I do wake in the middle of the night, I stumble down the hallway and into the bathroom, do my business, stumble back, and barely crack an eyelid if I can help it. Last night, not only did my body feel much lighter than on its other mid night treks, but my brain was actually relatively alert too. I remember everything that happened. (Which never happens!)
This alertness was strange, and not entirely beneficial as I spent the last hour of my sleep tossing and turning after awaking an hour before my alarm but not being ready to give up the mantle of sleep just yet. It was frustrating to have one part of me be so ready to be awake and another so desperate to go back to sleep.
I awoke with my alarm this morning though. And without snoozing my habitual three times, I was up. My eyes complained and were grainy, but my brain and body felt like they had been up for ages - which in some sense, I suppose they had been. So what should have been one of the most disturbed and sectioned sleeps that I have had in recent memory has turned into something that I actually awoke from feeling generally ok.
I don't know what to read into this, or even if the trend will continue but settle - allowing me to sleep without the interruptions but still awake feeling as immediately refreshed as I can - only time will tell. But I do find it interesting that there is a demonstrable effect from something that seemed so simple at the time. I am therefore - before today has even started - eager to know what tomorrow morning will bring. It is a strange thing. I will keep you posted.