It’s good to know your subconscious has a sense of humor. What with all that’s going on in the world these days, God knows we could use a laugh or two. At least a smirk now and then. One of the less-anticipated aspects of becoming old and wise is disrupted sleep. Our bodies did not evolve for the 925 schedule, and the “eight hours a night” trope is more naturally along a pattern of sleep for maybe four hours, get up for a while and get things done, then sleep for a few more hours, until dawn. That doesn’t fit well at the office, so we try to cram all of our sleep into one unbroken stint. When you’re young that’s often not a problem, at least in my experience.
Then you reach a certain age when, with no discernible change in habits, you have to visit the restroom in the middle of the night. Modern people, of course, have a lot on their minds, so after that mid-night pee it’s difficult to get back to sleep. For those of us who can’t break the long-term commuting habit, any waking after midnight is likely to be the end of a night’s sleep. Once you get tired enough, however, you tend to overpower the full bladder and snooze on to the usual rising time. (For some of us that’s earlier than it is for others, but that’s immaterial.) This is where the subconscious starts to play its role as the comedian.
Mildly thalassophobic, I tend not to go out on very deep water, especially in small craft. To be fair, I don’t live too close to the ocean and I don’t own a boat of any kind, so this often isn’t an issue. One of my biggest traumas in college was meeting the “swim a length of the pool” requirement for graduation—I understand that’s now been abolished. I nearly didn’t make it, but the last semester as a senior I had a private show—which must’ve been funny—for the swim coach. So when I need to pee and I sleep through the middle of the night, I have deep water dreams. I’m on a small boat in an ocean. Sometimes I see paranormal geysers bursting from the surface and wonder what they are. Then I wake up and dash for the bathroom. Hey, it could be worse—my subconscious could find a humorless way of waking me. Meanwhile, it probably wouldn’t hurt to take some adult swimming lessons.