One of the biggest problems with a major relationship change -- i.e. a gigantic break-up -- is the sleeping thing. You sleep next to someone for a long time and then you don't. And not just like you went on a short trip and then you're going to come back to your old life. You don't sleep next to that person anymore. Ever. That's weird. And about a hundred other descriptive words.
It takes some getting used to. Yeah, yeah, time heals all wounds. Blah. But coping in the now is difficult. You tell yourself that you may never sleep again! You know that's not true, but maybe you're a little dramatic sometimes. Whatever.
When I was a freshman in college, a friend of a friend of mine had one of these major break-ups. I vividly remember standing with her in the Brockway Dining Hall, talking about how she was doing with it. She mentioned the sleeping thing. She said, more than anything, she missed his ankle intertwined with hers during sleep. She said that some nights she'd wake up, not feeling his ankle, and scream (her roommate vouched for the middle of the night screaming). At the time, because I had never really been in a relationship that I deemed so intense (let alone having spent regular nights with a boy in bed!), I didn't get it. The ankle arrangement didn't sound very conducive to pleasant, restful sleeping anyway.
Well, its been eight years since that encounter in Brockway, and I'm sure she's fine now. Sleeping and such.
My solution to the sleeping thing after my relationship ended, thankfully, came with some comic relief (otherwise I probably wouldn't be sharing, right?). It was The Simpsons. Why? Well, it's two-fold. One, I happen to own multiple seasons of The Simpsons on DVD, so I wasn't locked into getting over the sleeping thing with a series that only went on for two or three seasons. Longevity was on my side. Two, Homer Simpson reminds me a little of my ex-boyfriend. Told you it was comedic. He knows this, so it's no surprise. No, he's not borderline moronic or an alcoholic. It's Homer's endearing qualities that they share. Oh, and Homer sings "la la la la" in his head while Marge talks, too. So the character was oddly comforting without beating me over the head. Not like listening to Elvis Costello's "Still" or Mates of States' "Drop and Anchor" was. (Oh, I'm a girl, of course I purposely tortured myself with sad music and ice cream...)
So I started watching The Simpsons every night to fall asleep. Every night. And it took a week or two, but it started working. I'd sleep alone. It was probably my first little victory, courtesy of Homer, Marge, Chief Wiggum and Comic Book Guy.
Now, though, it's a Pavlovian response. Simpsons - grow tired - sleep. Makes it a little more difficult to stay awake for new episodes on Sunday evening now, but it's certainly been productive for me.
And it's kinda funny that I started to get over my break-up because of Homer Simpson.