Full moon in two more sleeps. Why is that worth a mention? A number of reasons for our household. First it means disturbed sleep for about four nights until the moon passes into its next phase. One of us tossing and turning until we drop off only to wake a short while later to the tossing and turning of the other. Light sleep is synonomous with this time of the month. Cups of tea at 3am, completing the Sudoko grid or reading at ungodly hours are another sign the moon’s on full beam. Such shenanigans can last between one and two hours before we’re ready to try the sleeping trick again. When the alarm goes off at 6.45am we’re both groaning with brain fatigue and exhausted from our nocturnal activities – not of the warm and fuzzy kind.
Scientists suggest the changes in our sleeping patterns are caused by our ‘circa-lunar clock’ located at molecular levels within the brain. Apparently the lunar clock may be regulated by the hypothalamus, also responsible for ordering our circadian rhythm. Lighter sleep patterns during full moon may be an inbuilt protective mechanism left over from our caveman (and sheila) life. Back in the day of hunting and gathering we would have been at increased risk of falling prey to nocturnal predators who would spot us more easily with the help of the silvery moon on full alert. Therefore, experiencing lighter sleeps makes us less vulnerable to sleep through impending danger. Sounds reasonable. I’m thinking surely we should have evolved beyond that stage? Imagine being able to sleep through the night for an entire month!
The MOTH and I have been restless the last two nights with broken sleep, waking too early, and generally feeling out of sorts. I’m not sure how he went at work but this morning I arrived at work without my iPad or work mobile phone. My work colleague patiently listened to how my night had been followed by the dilemma of no gadgets with which to work. When I paused for breath she wondered whether the dob on my chin was the latest zit remedy or perhaps something more sinister. Actually it was lip balm dug out of the end of the tube with a finger nail. I won’t say any more than that. It’s a lunar thing.
For a brain usually works quite well it put in a poor performance at the office today. Emails and phone calls were a disaster and the draft monthly report looked like a spider in distress. My lunar brain was so far behind the eight ball that tasks scheduled to happen today have been pushed back until sometime next week – when it won’t be a full moon.
Around morning tea time my colleague suggested I might like to hit the reset button. She thought strong coffee might be the go. As work pals go she’s a gem. I didn’t have the heart to tell her there are four more days of possible brain malfunction due to my circa-lunar clock running amok.