Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Patterns of Thought


My head hits the pillow and before I fall asleep, my normal routine is a review of the day and any big events.  I often find myself thinking of things I need to do tomorrow, making a mental list.  Night is when thoughts can get stuck easier, playing over and over in my mind.  Morning is fresh and between the business of getting ready for work and the new day, my thoughts take a decidedly different pattern.  But, it is interesting how morning thoughts and night time thoughts are patterned differently.

Morning thoughts are decidedly more practical and task driven.  Take the dogs out, coffee in the cup, creamer too, get ready for work, and those are the thoughts that are pretty much lined up in my head.  After the coffee clears out the morning cobwebs, thoughts still tend to stay practical.  To do lists, notebooks to jot down things I need to remember to do, and calendars are the order of the day. 

But night time is another structure of thought all together.  As the day winds down, thoughts leave the calendar structure of the day and become more abstract.  It is this time when I find that in the quiet of bed time, my mind can still be whirring and need additional quiet to stop.  It may be a moment during the day, a note from a friend that made me smile.  Thoughts could take song from the sparrows singing in chorus in the bush behind the kitchen.  Memories of family moments, like Fourth of July picnics and Christmas celebrations, can bring a smile as I remember and drift off to sleep.  Dreams of future plans and hopes take shape in thought and reform themselves over and over. 

The do-over wishes sometime creep in; hurts or words that have cut will also make themselves known.  Like a fever that has disappeared during the day, to reassert itself at night, I try not to let those get stuck, though sometimes I am not so successful.  Worries can creep in, taking what should be a time to relax and before I know it I am squirming about, my shoulders tensed up to my chin and sleep makes itself scarce.  Go away little worry, stop poking at me, stop the replay of the words over that do not help!  I was thinking not so much of a specific instance last night, but how vulnerability to these kinds of things seems to increase at night.  

Patterns of thought, morning and night, the patterns change.