Last night, like most nights, I lay dozing as Ethan read a book. After a while, he clicked off the lamp, curled up next to me, and wrapped his arms around me.
Trouble is, I had just developed some weird kind of restless leg syndrome … in my arms. Specifically, my left arm. Put it here, nope. Put it there, nope. Put it behind me, under me, over me, nope, nope, nope. And all of this was while I was trying to let Ethan sleep. I deliberately placed my arm down against my side and determined to keep it still with only my willpower.
Have you ever had an itch you couldn’t scratch? I had my leg in a cast once, and when that leg itches, you just want to scream – the solution is so simple, but you just can’t manage it. That’s what my arm felt like, lying still like that. All I want to do is move around, said my arm. Why are you torturing me like this?
Meanwhile, the mutiny had spread to my right arm, and it was growing impossible to keep my upper body in one position for longer than 30 seconds. My legs were tired, my body exhausted, my eyelids barely openable, but I blearily removed Ethan’s arms from around me and slid out of bed, desperate to do something.
I ended up at the foot of the bed, doing push-ups on the floor. When my arms got tired of that, they were still a little antsy, so I boxed imaginary bad-guys, still with my eyes barely open. Then I started waving my arms around like noodles, dancing like a lunatic.
I’m really glad Ethan didn’t wake up for any of this. If he had, I think he would have assumed I was sleepwalking – and I’m not sure I would have denied it. “Are you awake?” …”No. It’s a metaphor. Leave me alone.” But by the time I was done noodle-dancing, my arms were a little more calm, and I came back to bed. Fortunately, this time I could hold still long enough to fall asleep. ♦