I’m taking a detour from my normal blog posts on brain health… I’m a little tired tonight, thanks to last night’s entertainment. I didn’t make it to sleep until 4 am.
How to have a bad night sleep that you can’t blame on anyone else but yourself.
In one short answer, listen to an audio book where everyone dies.
This happened to me last night.
I’ve been listening to a novel (Mrs. Mike) and it’s about a young woman who marries a Mountie and moves to live among the Native Americans and fur trappers of the Canadian rockies in the early 1900’s. I really enjoyed hearing of her adventures and was pretty engrossed by the book until, about an hour and a half from the end, when diphtheria wipes out a large percentage of the small settlement they live in, including her two little children.
This is where I was when I headed to bed last night. I had accidentally taken a really long nap that afternoon, so when I headed to bed, I wasn’t tired. But I thought it sounded like a nice idea to lay down and just listen to the story until I fell asleep. Plus, I knew I had to return it the next day so I was hoping that I would just be able to finish it.
I picked up the story a few minutes before where I had left off, and re-listened to the passage about the children dying. Then I heard about most of the Native Americans dying. That was all so incredibly sad. Sniff. Sniff.
Then there was a break from the sadness as she travels back to visit her family in Boston. Breathe.
But a few years later, she’s back in the rockies with her husband, and World War I has started. And she’s in charge of delivering the telegrams announcing the death of the sons and husbands who had gone off to war, including her best friend’s two sons. Tears came to my eyes.
Plus, another friend dies in childbirth and leaves twins. More tears.
By this time, I was counting down the minutes until it was over. It was so sad, yet I couldn’t stop listening! I had to know how it would end, and surely it would get better! But no, as if that wasn’t enough, influenza comes into the picture and kills her best friend. She ends up with the 4 year old twins that her friend was raising. Tears. Tears. Tears.
And then, at the very end, her Native American friend dies, and the trapper husband comes to her and asks her to raise their newborn daughter. Ack! Sobbing.
The whole last hour, I thought this can’t be happening, I mean, it was a really fun, entertaining read until this last section. And here I am laying in bed, at two in the morning, emotionally exhausted yet extremely awake from listening to such a harrowing account. And there was no way I was falling asleep anytime soon after listening to that.
Memo to self, don’t listen to this book at 2 am in the morning, ever. Again.