Someday My Prince Will Come – And F*ck It All Up. Insomniac Wishes for a Poisoned Apple!

I’ve never been much of a sleeper.

I’ve always sort of hated “wasting my life” on bodily functions.

I’m not kidding. In 7th grade I calculated how many years a lifetime of sleep and personal hygiene was going to “cost me.” I was really really BEREFT when I realized I would LOSE DECADES of my life just keeping this damned body alive!!!!

My poor mother reports that, when I was really small, she would just put me to bed with a stack of books and beg me to stay put so she could get some rest.

Like everyone else, I “pulled all-nighters” in college. I loved creating and learning stuff while the rest of the world slept.

But then the babies started coming and, I have to say, I lost my relish for middle of the night activities.


Enter Peri-Menopause!

Basically, these days, insomnia is KICKING MY ASS!

I know I’m not alone with this problem. Many of you have shared with me your bedtime stories of woe. Stress, care-giving, and shifts in hormones can all wreak havoc on a mid-life woman’s ability to get a good night’s sleep.

Most of us can still function with a night or two of sleeplessness. I know that I seem to be able to “keep on keeping on” for a while with disrupted sleep.

But then it’s like an alarm goes off in my body. The consequences of chronic sleep deprivation descend all at once. And then, BOOM! Five seconds later, either the world is coming to an end or else I want to open an artery or something – mine or someone else’s.

I have six sons and one husband. Truly truly, my life is like some Orwellian version of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. In our version, though we still have seven players, they take turns playing just three roles — Dopey and Grumpy and Sleepy (That last one really chaps my butt when my insomnia flares, too. My teenagers can sleep anywhere and all day long.)

What I wouldn’t give for a Happy or Bashful.


But I digress.

Because I’m exhausted.

This week, this Snow White is playing the role of Sleepy.

I wish that damned witch would hurry up and get here with the poisoned apple so I can get some sleep!

Here’s how the whole thing would go down:


I’m gazing down into the Wishing Well. Cue the music:


Snow White Jen: I’m wishing –

Echo: I’m wishing —


Snow White Jen: For the one I love . . .

Echo: For the one I love . . .


Snow White Jen: To find me –

Echo: To find me –


Snow White Jen: Today!



After the middle age Hag of My Salvation brought me that poisoned apple, I’d fall into the deepest most delicious sleep ever! Chores would be a thing of the past. Those needy-ass dwarves would have to get their own damn supper.

Then, they’d let me rest in some gorgeous glass room like a conservatory or something (but the sun wouldn’t wake me – no sirree!) and there would be flowers everywhere and then all the birds and forest creatures would hold vigil.

Oh yeah, and then some damned prince would come and kiss me and I’d wake up and probably shout at the poor unsuspecting guy, “What the fluck! Can’t you see I’m sleeping?”


Love, Jen

Photo: Flickr, torbakhopper

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34 Responses to Someday My Prince Will Come – And F*ck It All Up. Insomniac Wishes for a Poisoned Apple!

  1. Melanie says:

    Not too much makes me crazier than lack of sleep and/or messed up by night sweats sleep.
    The longer I’m at this perimenopause/menopause business, the more amazed I am that there aren’t daily headlines about murders by menopausal women. We must have remarkable restraint. 😉

    • Jennifer says:

      weepy, pissy, dingy, hopeless, forgetful-ee, frustrated-ee, writer–ee — those are my menopausal dwarves.

  2. Bonnie says:

    Research has consistently revealed that when we sleep less, we eat more PLUS when we sleep less, we burn more! Yes we even burn less calories (up to 20% less) when we don’t get enough sleep. I include a long list of possible solutions for this in my special report that I’ll be sharing very shortly. As a RD specializing in weight management for women in their mid-years, I have never heard a woman over 50 say “she sleeps well.” Yes, it’s amazing we continue to function as highly as we do (I’m part of this group too). Thanks for sharing your thoughts and I hope tonight’s the night of bliss for us all!

  3. AHGAWD…. I love you!!!! I am laughing my ass off right now. Have soooo felt all of this pain with you. You just have to laugh. What else can you do?

  4. Amy Grams says:

    So what if all of us wide-awake, sweaty, perimenopausal women got together – secretly – during the night and formed our own rule-the-world club? We could seriously kick some ass! World hunger? Solved? Middle East peace? No problem. You could at least have fun at your sons’ expense – shave his head while he sleeps or something? That’ll teach him to sleep so soundly! 🙂

  5. Ah, the Snow White metaphor…
    When my kids were young, we had Crabby, Sneezy, Sleepy, Whiny, Happy- with B…y and Smary(pants) for their parents…

  6. Maureen says:

    When I’m am awake in those wee hours, I usually surf Pinterest — it soothes and lulls me back to sleep. Recently, my body has been waking up at 4:30, after much internal debate I decide that I really have to go. My dogs see this as a sign that I must be wanting to pet them. So now there are 2 people and 2 dogs in bed. Wishing you a good night’s sleep.

    • Jennifer says:

      I’m afraid of Pinterest. I’m afraid I’ll go in there and never, ever, ever come back out to the land of the living. Make sure you leave bread crumbs so your family can find you. I hope you signed up for updates, Maureen, so we can stay in touch! J

  7. Miki Strong says:

    Okay Jennifer … just at the moment when I need a refreshing break, I start ROTFLMAO at your blog title. Need I say more? You’ve said it all.

    Can I (ever so gratefully) share that I do sleep … blessed, deep, uninterrupted sleep (aside from Grumpy snoring away beside me) – but I feel for you … been there and don’t want to return!

    Love your humor Jennifer … my Dad always used to say that a sense of humor is when you can laugh anyway!

    ~ Miki xo
    Oh, and Melanie, yes, we do have remarkable restraint! Why don’t they see it? 🙂

    • Jennifer says:

      Thank you, love. It’s a good thing you’ve developed so much street cred with me. Otherwise I’d be really really annoyed that you are sleeping.

  8. Patti Winker says:

    Damn Prince. When I wake up, if I want a kiss, I’ll ask for one. grrrrr.

    Yeah, there is no joy in Mudville – no sleep in Bedville. My Hubby is puzzled; “Why do you wake up tired every morning?” BECAUSE I DIDN’T WAKE UP… I’VE BEEN UP!

    I thought it would get instantly better after I went into menopause, but it didn’t. There is only one way I’ve found to bring on a better night’s sleep: exercise and less wine. [[sigh]]

  9. Marian Kramer says:

    Fan on, fan off. On, off. Blankets on, blankets off… All night long. A few nights ago it was literally all *&^%% night and my brain would not shut down. Very strict diet to loose a few pounds gained oh so easily this past winter. I thought exercise would help: Zumba class 4 days a week, Curves 5 days a week and a weekly 4 mile hike in the canyon every weekend. Heat and cold. Hot flash and then cold as ice. I would think I had a brain tumor but my two sisters have exactly the same symptoms.

    I do not have one ounce of patience. Suddenly, I say exactly what I think. If you are being manipulative and I am not in the mood for it, I will call you on it. If you can’t handle it then that is too bad. Deal with it. A light has turned on. I feel real.

    There is nothing wrong with me. I am in menopause. Beware ye mortals. I have come into my maturity.

    • This sounds like me … with the exception of the exercise (I have fibromyalgia so added to the not sleeping — just getting through the work day is a major accomplishment). My boyfriend must be a saint in disguise as he takes it all in stride without a fuss … even when it’s him that gets the brunt of my moodiness. Sleep deprivation for almost 20 years sucks. If I only wake up once in the night, I call it a miracle.

  10. KatieP says:

    I wanted to say I had three months of menopausal insomnia and then my period came back so I’m sleeping again but I fear the wrath of the night-time dwellers who will curse my good luck.

    If it’s any consolation, knowing what’s coming is almost worse … it’s like being tied to a railway track and hearing the train get louder …

    • Jennifer says:

      Hey, love. When you get there, we’ll all do it together. One day at a time. enjoy your lovely day!!!!!!!

  11. Sarah O says:

    The blankets on, blankets off all night long are beginning to wear on me too. Just in the last few weeks it’s suddenly gotten all crazy – not just intermittent once in a while stuff but all freakin’ night long! And then there’s the furnace of a husband sleeping beside me. We need a bigger bed!

    Still not sure if this is worse than babies waking me up all night long though. At least now I have my days of exhaustion to myself, instead of walking around zombie-like while toddlers cling to my legs!

  12. Marian Kramer says:

    I am so glad to know that I’m not alone. I do have a king sized bed and a kind husband who pretends not to notice the blankets/fan war all night long.

    Does anyone remember Margaret Meade? She coined a phrase long ago “post menopausal zest.” She claimed, in her international studies, that women all over the world experienced a huge surge in energy and creativity once the hot flashes settled down. I’m banking on this.

    Meanwhile, it is off to the gym for me. I’ve lost close to ten pounds of my “winter weight” with a few more to go. I must say, without being smug, that I do feel a whole lot better for it.

  13. helen says:

    oh holy insomnia

    i have the feeling that docs never take you serious when talking about insomnia after they have taken a look at your birth year!

    in march i wasn.t able to stand still for the lack of sleep. at least that was what i thought. i was standing still but my ANS was trembling … at least it felt like that.
    strange experience.

    if you don.t need that prince, give him my phone number, and tell him he should bring milk and honey while he is riding over here ;D (there is a super markt close to my bed)

  14. Susie says:

    Hilarious – loved this blog. Best to you.

  15. Patty D says:

    LOL! Looks like we’re all singing in the same key-
    Lack’O’Sleep Misery!
    I propose we start a forum or a chat room where we can go commiserate and support eachother on these oh so frequent sleepless nights…in the days of old there were cultures who provided special housing or quarters for women when they were menstruating and also to give birth in. It’s high time we women of peri/meno-pause had our own place of respite!

  16. I’ve started this maddening cycle of waking up approximately 1 hour after I fall asleep and staying awake for an hour or two (I’m pretty sure my mother went through the same thing). Luckily, the wee small hours are when they run the Law & Order reruns with Chris Noth, but I think I’m going to start using the time to write. Pad, pen and away we go.

  17. janice says:

    Well, how strange. . . here I am, committed to getting to bed early and instead I fell upon (and I mean, really fell as I am not a internet night owl!) into Jen in Wonderland black hole. An hour later . . .or should I say deeper.

    My goddess. I am blown away by your writing–literally. It’s got me all shook up and going from piece to piece on your blog. But, this final one, rocks my world (well it was the one about alcohol and dads and stuff just before this). I cannot even come up with descriptors (and it takes a lot to blow out those word/thought/feeling circuits in me). I got one poor-ass, REALLY, word: Thank you (well, that was two, wasn’t it?). Wow. Thank you. Something has come undone. And, it’s it is something all right. Thank you. Absolutely, unabashedly amazing–not just the writing, but the raw, real Y-O-U. Weirdly, hypnotic. I will visit again. Bless you.

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