Operation Oysterhood: 16 January

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.

— @HaggardHawks

I can cope with loadshedding as long as I know the schedule in advance and can prepare, and, crucially, if the power failure does not occur in the evening between ten and midnight. Being alone and trying to fall asleep in a completely dark and silent house while praying that the recently installed new alarm battery will last for the duration of the outage is no fun. A bottle of pink bubbly was my solution against the anxiety. I might have a problem. Or not. There aren’t too many pink bubbly bottles left in my house and I do not intend to go out and try to get any more before the booze ban is over. No-problem solved. Although, I do have the ingredients for margaritas, and pina coladas and …

I did manage to fall asleep but was awake again shortly after one and struggled again for a while. My brother sent me a TED Talk about the importance of sleep. After watching it this morning, I realised that there is very little hope for me and my insomnia. I only seem to be able to sleep when I break all the rules of how to sleep more healthily. I am a hopeless case.

But what I found really intriguing about the TED Talk was the importance of sleep for memory. Of course, I do know from my own experience how ‘sleeping on things’ allows you to order and secure them in your memory. And perhaps that is why I can’t sleep. My brain has been actually refusing to remember. And I can’t blame it. My insomnia problems began with grief, continued through trauma and are now a companion to an insane pandemic. Perhaps I am not sleeping so that I don’t remember, so that I cannot fix these things in my mind, and that when the time comes to move on, I won’t be burdened by the details of the horror we are busy surviving?

There is a catch, of course. Lack of sleep shortens your lifespan. But maybe a shorter life without remembering details is better than having to live with all the memories much longer … One needs to survive a pandemic first, after all.

And the wonderful news from the ICU is that our friend is on the mend, all the signs pointing to recovery. Joy!

A morning of reading and editing until it was time for a lunch Skype date with Mom and Krystian before the next bout of loadshedding. I decided to spend the two hours in the garden, reading, sunbathing and swimming. I only got out of my PJs then.

The Frog Princes and his friend have abandoned me. But Mozart assured me that my froggish dalliance has been forgiven and that he still loves me no matter what.

Healthy olives for dinner. My love and I (with one eye – multitasking) are watching football tonight :)

Did you watch this TikTok video: “The African National Congress”? It’s the funniest and saddest thing since Sarah Cooper. It will make you cry with laughter or laugh with tears.

Good night.

PS I only had half of the pink bottle. The other half is still in the fridge. Just in case you were beginning to get seriously worried.

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”


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