In case you haven't heard, there were two brutal murders of queer people of color this week (details below). The same week as Transgender Day of Remembrance. I can't really articulate my feelings, mostly, they are a mix of rage, overwhelm, sadness, grief, irritation and helplessness--a lot of crying while reading twitter. I also can't believe shit like this is still happening. Matthew Shepard was murdered over a decade ago. I remember those vigils, but for some reason these hit closer to home. Maybe it's because I have been out of the closet so much longer, maybe it is because more of my friends and lovers are gender nonconforming now. Maybe I am more wholly in my body and self so I feel entitled to express the rage in my heart when it happens instead of dissociating.
Many folks will be familiar with the show Downton Abbey that has swept through the hulusphere. The first season is on Netflix watch instantly, second season I think is on hulu plus now. Get on it if you like things that are nighttime soapy and vintage realness it is totally that sweet spot shows like Mad Men fill.
Anyway, in the first season Lady Grantham says to her eldest daughter Mary that she should get a good night’s sleep. Mary quips, “You always say that.” And Lady Grantham says, “That’s because it usually does.”
I keep thinking about this scene lately as I cultivate my sleeping habits amidst a lot of life schedule changes.
I notice how well a good night’s sleep treats me the next day. How much self care there is in turning off the internet at a “reasonable hour”, whatever that means. For me that means setting myself up to sleep for 7-8 hours. Feels like a luxury given how much I need/want to accomplish in a given day and how much play time I want to squeeze in there. But accepting my human limitations is one of my great spiritual lessons and, unfortunately, I know that means prioritizing sleep over all those zombies I want to serve cheeseburgers in my clickie clickie game.
I have a lot of admiration for people who can sleep very little and thrive. In accepting my own human limitations I am accepting human diversity and props to my siblings in the struggle who can handle life, art, activism, family, work with very little sleep.
I have had a ton of conversations lately with folks about how much fun we’re having going to bed early. (Usually when a topic is coming up in conversation that’s how I know I am brewing it for my blog.) Just this morning my pal Austin was bragging that he got to bed at 10:30 the night before. Time Out New York called me a Plus Size Party Girl and I know that to be true. However, I also know it is true I need and want to sleep. The tried and true way that I’ll be totally on my game when I go out is to get a lot of rest the night before. A good night’s sleep is my party drug.
Sure, there are times in my life where I’m all go go go, one social engagement after another. But if I don’t factor in necessary sleep I will inevitably get myself sick. At that pace, also, I certainly don’t enjoy things the way I want to. And what is the point of living an incredible life without the time and faculties to savor it?
Lately I’ve been going through one giant fiasco after another. Seriously, the shit storm has been Saturn Return in proportion, yet I am 33 and supposed to be past my Saturn Return.* Personal life, financial life, work life. All requiring attention, solutions, strategies, and going to bed with the faith that everything is going to feel better in the morning. And it usually does.
I’ve been hella anxious lately. There’s not a lot in my life I can control right now but the stuff I can I’m totally going to control what I can. So I gave up coffee again and get enough sleep.
Sleeping a lot on the weekends has also helped me cope. My emotions have a very tight correlation to my body and all the stuff I’ve been going through is exhausting. Relenting to that and reveling in the joy of sleep has been great. A weekend night of 10 hours is really amazing to me these days.
I’m always checking in with myself regarding depression, since it runs in my family and I am prone to bouts of it (and the oh so obnoxious seasonal affective disorder where just the lack of light bums me out). Sleeping a lot can sometimes mean I’m depressed but I know right now I’m just making sure I can be the best Bevin I can be under the circumstances.
So. Self care. Sleep. Sleep as a means of coping. Sleep as a means of energizing to enjoy the most out of parties and life. Here’s to lots!
*If any of my readers out there are astrologers and want to barter for a reading I would be so down.