Counting Sheep

Mom’s has what she believes is a highly original and fool-proof way of falling asleep.  Counting backwards.  She tells me about this at least a couple of times a month.  It’s usually part of her ‘I really had a good night’s sleep’ conversation where she recounts how few times she had to get up to go to the bathroom the night before.

This morning, as I brought her a cup of coffee, she mentioned it again for the second or third time this month.  After thanking me for the steaming mug of Breakfast Blend, she added, “You know, Patty, I don’t know if I’ve told you about how I make myself go to sleep at night.”

“You have, Mom, several times.  You count backwards.  Why?” I asked.  “Are you thinking about applying for a patent?”

“No, not really,” she replied, completely oblivious to the kidding I was giving her.  “But I’ll tell you one thing, ever since I started counting to go to sleep, I don’t dream anymore.”

“Of course you do,” I said.  “Everyone dreams.”

“Well I don’t,” she responded emphatically, taking her first sip of hot coffee.

“Yes you do, Mom,” I replied.  “You just don’t remember your dreams because you have them while you’re really sound asleep.  Most people only remember the dreams they have just before they wake up.”

“That may be the case for most people, but I’m telling you, counting makes me not dream,” she said to my retreating back as I walked into the kitchen where she wouldn’t see me rolling my eyes and shaking my head.

After a pause of a few seconds, she called out to me again.  “I did have one dream about The Price Is Right except it doesn’t count because it was while I was taking a nap, not when I was really sleeping.  There wasn’t any counting.”

“Fine, I’ll alert the Sleep Institute,” I called back.  “Maybe they’re hiring.”



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