Monday, November 30, 2009
For the last 6 months I've been waking up in the very early morning hours with my back hurting - aching.
"I'm only 33," I tell myself. This stuff happens to old people.
And so, taking it into my own hands, I've been researching the benefits of healthy sleep positions (since I am one to toss and turn for at least a half an hour before the waves of blissful sleep begin to come over me). And in my research, I've found that you can train your body- with a lot of self control- to sleep in a position that you want.
Two nights ago, I decided to sleep on my side (which is my favorite) with a comfortable pillow between my knees to help support my spine.
In the morning, my back didn't ache. As much.
Last night, Bill, being the supportive husband that he is, decided that we would both try sleeping on our backs with support pillows under our knees. (which supposedly is the best position for a healthy back).
He ran downstairs and gathered all the extra pillows we have. He was anxious for my scripture reading and internet perusing to be done so he could help me get my pillows situated 'just so'.
After getting me situated, he then worked on getting himself comfortable.
While staring at the ceiling, I asked, "um, sweetie, who's gonna get the light?"
And this was the conversation that followed, after laying in the dark, staring at the ceiling, for a few minutes:
Natalie: So, how are you?
Bill: How are you?
Natalie: I'm actually really comfortable in an odd sort of way, but at the same time I'm having an inner battle trying to resist the overwhelming urge to flip onto my side.
Bill: Yeah, me too.
**LONG PAUSE IN CONVERSATION**
Bill: So, what does the person win who sleeps an entire night in this position?
Natalie: Hmmmmm. I don't know. What do you think?
Bill: How about the winner gets to choose the movie and we have a movie/date night after the kids are asleep.
Natalie: Sounds good. If I win, will you play with my hair while we watch the movie?
A few minutes later, I can tell by Bill's breathing that he is asleep. (The guy can fall asleep the moment his head hits the pillow....I on the other hand cannot).
I'm still awake at midnight; comfortable, but wanting to turn to my side. I'm 'willing' myself not to. "I can do this," I think to myself. "If I can just fall asleep, I've got it made."
At 12:30 Bill rolls to his side in his sleep.
"If he's sleeping on his side, than so am I!"
I roll to my side.
I fall asleep.
I wake up at 5 a.m. and see that Bill is on his back again. Drat! I know the alarm is going to go off soon, so I hurry and position myself on my back again before Bill notices. :)
The alarm rings. I hurry and get up, get dressed and go grocery shopping while everyone is still asleep.
As Bill is helping me bring groceries in he asks, "So, how did you sleep?"
"Alright. How 'bout you?"
"Pretty good. I don't think I turned to my side."
"Yes you did. In your sleep. About 12:30. I know, because I was still awake staring at the ceiling and as soon as you turned, so did I!"
Bed time at our house has turned into quite the fun adventure ... and into quite the competition.
I think overall though, both nights that I have gone to sleep, determined to sleep in a good position, with support pillows, I have waken up with far less back pain. Which is a good thing.
I'm just thinking that we might need a security camera installed in our room to be able to declare the official "Slept On Back the Whole Entire Night" winner. We might just have a couple cheaters on our hands.