I’ve struggled with insomnia off and on since middle school. My dad and I used to get up in the middle of the night to watch televangelists and laugh at their hair and spray tans. I read the dictionary at night in high school. Twice. I read Don Quixote in Spanish, which I don’t speak a word of other than “Yo tango una gato que se llama es Ella,” which I’m not really sure I spelling or conjugating correctly since I only know it because someone taught it to me while I was very drunk one night in college after I had complained that I felt like I hadn’t learned anything all day. All in an attempt to get to sleep. The reading, that is. I have taken several different types of sleeping pill, as well as natural remedies like Valerian Root over the years. But I’ve figured out that sometimes if I do a guided meditation on an app I have on my iPad, I can get to sleep without the aid of chemicals or planticals.
So there I was, meditating my way into sleep a bit ago using a new guided meditation app, and I was pretty relaxed and starting to let go of my day, when the meditation guide-lady said “acrosst.” Yes, with a “t” at the end. And then it was all over for me.
ME: Why did she say “acrosst?” There’s no “t” in across. Maybe I misheard it. Should I try to rewind and see? No, the light from my iPad will just wake me up again. Is “rewind” the right word? There’s no tape involved. “Backtrack,” maybe? “Reverse?” No, that’s not right. What do the Millenials call it? I don’t know. But where did that “t” in “across” thing even come from? How did it work its way into people’s pronunciation? Why do I care? Shut up, Emily. You’re supposed to be breathing.
MEDITATION LADY: Your body is heavy.
ME: Did she just call me “fat?” WTF?
MEDITATION LADY: Your mind is still.
ME: Yeah, still trying to figure out why you, who have no discernible accent, would say “acrosst.”
MEDITATION LADY: Imagine your body melting with each exhalation of breath.
ME: Like that guy in the first X-men movie (was it the first one, or a later one? I get them all confused.) that Magnito turns into a jellyfish. I love that guy – the actor who plays Magnito. Is he the one who’s friends with Patrick Stewart, or is he the one who plays Dumbledore? Or are they the same guy? I always get them confused. Hey, just like the X-men movies! Well, whoever he is, I love him. I don’t like the actor who turns into a jellyfish. I can’t remember his name either. If Dumbledore and Magnito got in a fight, who do you think would win? I have an itch on my ear. I’ve already relaxed my arm. Will I be undoing all that meditation if I reach up and scratch my ear? Wait, am I technically meditating right now? I mean, really, let’s be honest. I’m failing at this. Just like I fail at everything.
MEDITATION LADY: Relax the tension in your jaw.
ME: There is tension in my jaw!! How did she do that?! She knows I was clenching my jaw just now but she doesn’t know how to pronounce “across?” The world just doesn’t make sense sometimes. I should really give up on meditating tonight and take a sleeping pill. And maybe write this down before the pill kicks in.
And now, dear reader, here we are. Sweet dreams.