Tuesday, January 2, 2007

I think I might be cured...

It's only taken five years and two months, but I think I might finally be cured of my need to watch television. Partly this is due to the DVR, which - I feel like a total dork for saying this - has changed my life. I no longer feel like I need to be home to watch something. I just set it up to record. If I want to go to bed before e.r. ends, I just hit the record button. Partly this is due to time. One of the reasons I've watched television so very regularly in the past few years was that when 9/11 happened, I wasn't watching anything. So for years, I would click over to one of the major news channels every so often - usually I had to check all of them to make sure they didn't have the same story on (apparently, the benchmark for major disaster in my head).

I've stopped watching the news altogether. And do you know what's happened? I sleep. I fall asleep quickly and I stay asleep all night. I haven't felt this well rested in a long time. It's as if cutting out the bad stuff - that I can't help but internalize and mull over for hours - has actually helped me cut out the bad stuff in my life at night. I used to lie awake thinking of everything that was even a little bad and just getting anxious and nervous and then I would be even more awake and I'd think more. I ended up staying up every night until midnight or later just so I would be completely exhausted when I went to bed and I didn't have time to think.

I noticed this last night because I was awoken by loud sirens and fire engines driving through my neighborhood. I was awake for at least an hour afterward, worried for the people they were going to help, worried that it might be someone I knew. And then once the worry started, I couldn't turn it off. So I'm extra tired today and I have quite a headache. But I've learned something valuable about the way I deal with things. Best during daylight hours.

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