The curtains of unintended consequences.

I did something last week that I have never done before. At the age of 31, I hung a pair of curtains. Yes, I did; and what’s more I’m proud of it. They’re big, they’re blue and they’re ruining my life.

First of all let’s get one thing straight: I haven’t had empty plain windows all these years. Complete strangers have not been able to look in on me in the evenings and see me polishing the old silverware. No, it’s just that I’ve always used roller-blinds or shutters until now.

However, in my quest towards a better nights sleep, someone suggested to me that curtains may be a better solution for my bedroom. They’re warmer, and quieter, and darker they said. And knock me down with an inflatable platypus if they weren’t right. I really am finding it easier to sleep. Much easier to sleep. Really, sooo much easier to sleep. In fact it’s so lovely that I’d quite like to be doing it right now.

Seriously though. With my old blind when it got light outside a tiny fragment of that light filtered through the flimsy canvas, penetrating the darkness of my bedroom. It said to my brain, “Hey, you! It’s time to get up!” Whether I wanted them or not those determined little photons were there, forcing their way through my eyelids like miniature commandos, assaulting my consciousness and rousing me from my pleasent dreams.

But my new curtains aren’t like that. Oh no, these are ‘blackout’ curtains; specially designed to be completely impenetrable. Not even the most persistent photon with the highest of energies could even comprehend for a moment crossing the threshold of these artificial fibres. All of which means that now, instead of being gently woken each morning by the glorious arrival of a new dawn on God’s earth, there could be a nuclear fireball in the back garden and I’d be lying there wondering what all the noise was about

So here’s my new problem: no longer one of getting to sleep, but instead of forcing myself out of bed in the morning… rather than the afternoon… or the evening. Perhaps it’s time to look back at that list of tips about Sleep Hygeine, or maybe I just need to head out and buy myself another alarm clock, or two.

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