When Bad Days Turn Good – Part 1
INTERESTING STUFF – 26 September 2020

When Bad Days Turn Good – Part 2

On Wednesday in Part 1, I wrote about sleepless night terrors and how it seemed reasonable to me, during one of them, that we ought to be able to blink our eyes – or something similar – and quietly die.

I doubt I would have written about it had not my friend, Annie Gottlieb, in New York City, following that night sent a couple of quotations one of which seemed to have been written precisely for what I had experienced.

Her second quotation came into play a day later.

After that long night with not a wink of sleep, Thursday was generally a lost day. I got a few things done but not much. Plus, my nebulizer and oxygen didn't have nearly as strong an effect as they normally do.

My hospice nurse, who made her scheduled visit that day, gave me a new prescription to help with energy and appetite and rearranged how I take a couple of other drugs to try to help me sleep.

By bedtime that night, I was as exhausted as I've ever felt. I worked at staying awake as long as possible so if I slept, I would not wake at some ungodly early hour and ruin the next day too, but I succumbed, I think, at about 9PM.

When I woke, I was shocked to see that I had slept until just after 5AM. Eight whole hours of uninterrupted, dead-to-the-world sleep. Wow. And then I saw the two half-pills on my table that I had intended to take when I was ready to turn out the light. I had forgotten to do that and still slept all through the night.

What a day I had on Friday. I almost forgot that I have cancer and COPD. Of course, that exists only in my head (and heart). As soon as I walk too fast down the hall or try to carry something weighing more than about five pounds, I am sharply reminded with extreme shortness of breath.

But within the parameters of my diseases, I had a great day and I was thrilled. I don't remember when I last felt so good. And it lasted all day until normal bedtime. I even walked out to the trash bins and mailbox with greater ease than in a long time.

On Sunday, Annie sent her two Rilke quotations and here, following on my spectacularly good Friday, is the second one which, Annie says, Rilke told to a woman friend who was helping to care for him:

“Never forget, dear friend, life is a glory.”

Oh, yes. Life is such a glory – even as small a life as mine has become now, thanks to age, disease and pandemic - and it was in full force for me on that Friday.

The mystery, of course, is how Annie knew to send those two quotations exactly when I could use and enjoy them so perfectly and personally.

Thank you, Annie.

Sleep disturbances are a well-known affliction among old people. The Sleep Foundation notes,

”As people age they tend to have a harder time falling asleep and more trouble staying asleep than when they were younger. It is a common misconception that sleep needs decline with age. In fact, research demonstrates that our sleep needs remain constant throughout adulthood.”

It's not my purpose today to report on elder sleep issues, causes and what to do about them. (Maybe soon.)

Mostly with these two posts, I wanted to marvel out loud at how sometimes the universe pulls a couple of its smaller components together in such perfect concert.


Exactly. The universe made me do it.

It’s a blessing to have a friend who loves us so much that s/he knows exactly what words will bring comfort, peace and even joy in these dark nights we all must face. I’m glad you got some good rest! ❤️

“You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”
― Dr. Seuss

Good for you, Ronni, getting such great sleep. Well done! Were that you could do it each night.

Yes, it is amazing sometimes when the universe seems to provide something at just the right time. I know of two occasions when I did something where I found out later had a profound effect on someone's life. What I did was sort of an "out of the blue" type thing that just sort of happened vs something planned or expected.

Glad your days are better, at least sometimes, it keeps you going.

So glad you had a good, really good night's rest, and one of those glory days after!
"Life is such a glory............even as small a life as mine has become now............."
Yes, that resonates so deeply with me. My life has become very small too, and yet, and yet, on a good day it's so large and glorious! More glory days to you, Ronni!

A good night’s sleep changes everything. I don’t know much about poetry, but I think Rilke is wonderful. I just finished a book (for the second time) that I think you might enjoy, Ronni, “The Friend,” by Sigrid Nunez, the winner of the 2018 National Book Award.

Good sleep, good friends and more inspiration from you, my truth telling friend. May you have many more restful nights in recognition of a life so well and honorably lived.

Synchronicity. I love when that happens, when seemingly random things coincide and have meaning because of the circumstances.
I'm glad you had such a good day and may your sleep be sweet and deep. That wish extends to all of us old folks. The world needs our wisdom and for me, at least, wisdom is more easily accessed when I am rested.

Blessings all.

I felt truly joyful reading your post today, Ronni. Wanted at once to share it with a dear
friend who now subscribes to TGB and is delighted with every post.

How good it is to rejoice with you! May you have many such wonderful nights -- and days!

love, ruth-ellen

I'm so happy for you and your day.

To read about your wonderful, non-pill abetted, whole night's sleep is truly delicious news! I am still smiling...

Page in California

Thank you so much for what you wrote about in this post, Ronni. It really spoke to me (well, they all do, but this one especially). I love the quote, “Never forget, dear friend, life is a glory.” It reminded me that once in a while, in a moment when I can look beyond the dailiness of life, I marvel at the sheer happenstance of my existence: that my parents happened to conceive me in that particular moment (maybe the mixing together of genes would have been different at a different moment and I would be a different person), that they happened to have even met and fallen in love in the first place, that I've lived to be 67 and am still here, etc. If I can really grasp all that, I can be transported out of that ordinary moment to a state of marvel and gratitude for my very existence, and for being in that moment, whatever is going on at the time. A dear friend once told me that in her practice of being mindful, she tries to focus on the very thinnest sliver of the now. When I can remember that, it makes me feel better, because usually, no matter what happened in the past or what I'm worried about for the future, in this thin sliver of the moment, I'm fine.

Y-a-ay, Ronni! Good for you. Sounds like your hospice nurse is on top of things, too.

Hey, synchronicity!
Like that time in New York when you were falling and a hand reached out and grabbed you.

“ ...Life is a glory”

Love this. Even when our lives shrink, get more concentrated, it is a glory.

Thanks again for taking us along on your walk Ronni, I learn so much from you and all the comments.


As someone once said: Sleep is our best friend, but one who often keeps us waiting.

What good news! So often it seems that just when we need it most, the universe relents, eases up and shows some mercy! Glad to hear that was the case for you at the tail end of this week. May you have a lovely and restful weekend Ronni!

Yay, nothing feels better than a full night’s sleep. It is rare but when it happens it does change your perspective on the world. May you enjoy more nights like this.

You are so present in every moment. And then you take the time to share with us. You are a treasure.

So very glad you got to sleep.... those dark late night thoughts haunt all of us, don't you think? When they are tinged with reality, it's even worse.

This post has resonated with me as well. I woke up at 4:30 am as it seems a pattern I've fallen into. The next day I'm pretty much useless and I hate it! I'm so glad that you had that good nights sleep and wish you many more. It felt good to read your post and know your day was great.
Much Admiration.

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