| 5.6°C Dublin

There's just no rest for the wicked

The Gods are against me. I've never had a problem sleeping. Head on the pillow, and off I went. No guilt. No conscience. A few drinks may also have had something to do with it. But lately it's all gone a tad pear-shaped. You don't need as much sleep when you get older, they say. I say I do. In fact, I need a lot more. I'm shattered most of the time and would love 12 hours sleep a night. I don't have to get up early anymore. Sleeping until eleven would be good.

But lately I can't seem to get through the night. The loo calls and then calls again a few hours later. I invariably step over the dog, who sleeps on the floor of my room, and nearly cause myself a serious injury. I'm only getting to about three in the morning now. I suppose it's better that I'm actually waking up and not having an accident in the bed. But the other night took the biscuit. One of my smoke alarms, which is just outside my bedroom door was beeping and the dog nearly had a conniption. He freaked. Lunging at the bedroom door to get out. I let him out and he hid in the garden behind a water feature that I couldn't negotiate. There I was shouting like a virago in my very unattractive nightie at four o clock in the morning in my back garden. I have very close neighbours. I am probably a topic of conversation. A job for the residents' committee. And because I couldn't change the battery, we had a repeat performance for the whole night. And then he completely lost the plot. Because I'm dieting and couldn't have a middle-of-the-night chunk of chocolate, my stomach started to rumble loudly. And he was terrified. He growled at my stomach. It got to the stage where I started singing to drown out the rumbling in order for him not to hear. A mad woman lying in bed singing in the middle of the night when all I wanted was a peaceful night's sleep. Maybe putting the dog in the shed to sleep. If I suggested that, the kids would probably put me in the shed to sleep. Maybe that's an idea.

Sunday Independent