Words – My New Sleeping Pill
Do you have those nights or even several nights when you just can’t get to sleep or stay asleep? Have you try herbal remedies, meditation or some over the counter meds which fail to satisfy? I’ve been there. Sometimes various remedies seem to be effective at different times for a couple of days. Then nada. What is one to do? My right brain’s resourcefulness came to the rescue and I concocted some word games that work wonders for me. Thought I would share a few. Maybe they might give any non-sleepers out there ideas that might be suitable.
Truth be told there was a time when some of these games just got my mind going and kept me awake even longer, which is the danger of too much thinking. Then a mysterious change occurred. Maybe it was hormones. Who knows? Yet, glad of it. Here are samples of the earlier games which were not long-term effective, but might be for someone else. There was listing song titles which included a color. Next I tried song titles with either a male or female name. An added challenge to this game was going through the alphabet citing a name for each letter. I discovered I liked using the alphabet as a basis for most of the games.
Some other examples were naming flowers, trees, fruits or vegetables for each letter. I only selected one category per night. The x, y, z’s could get tricky. Another alphabet game that worked for several months was one we used to play as kids. Maybe you know it. Starting with A, it goes – A my name is Alice and my husband’s name is Adam. We come from Alabama and we sell apples. You do the same for each letter using whatever names, places, products, you choose.
The next long term game included coming up with a myriad of male or female names for each alphabet letter. I might do female names one night and male names the next. This was a great success. What I think happened was my brain would get either tired or bored after a few letters and I’d fall asleep. When this game started to wear thin, I stumbled onto a new scheme.
My subscribing to the Merriam-Webster’s word of the day spawned the current sleeping pill formula. I actually alternate this one with another pill. I will explain both. Using the M-W daily word’s first and last letter, I think of as many words as possible that start and end with those same letters. I surprised myself at how many words I actually know. Along the way I added some twists and turns to keep things interesting. It doesn’t take long for brain boredom to set in. After that it’s all good until the alarm goes off in the morning.
The final pill I will describe is a recent one I discovered which I alternate with the M-W daily word. I’m not sure how this would suit anyone who relies on seeing the printed word and writing things down. Being blind, I envision everything in my mind so this pill goes down easily. This game appears in puzzle books or puzzle sections of the newspaper. A word is presented and you have to make as many other words as possible using the letters of that word. I tend to select words like matriculate, shenanigans, candelabra for example. There are nearly endless words that can be formed from their letters. The more that can be formulated the faster I fall asleep. It’s like my brain is telling me, “Listen, lady. We are supposed to do our clearest, most creative, most focused thinking during waking hours. Kindly stop bugging me with those stupid games. I need to get my zees so I can be at my best for us.”
Homer once said, “There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep.” Strangely, curiously, pairing the two resulted in my formula for sleep. Go figure.
Comments are welcomed.