Establishing a sensible sleep schedule

-"It is easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them." 
--Alfred Adler
My goal for a聽sensible sleep schedule.
-- Go to sleep at 11 PM
-- Wake up at 6:00 AM. 
What follows are my efforts at implementation.

Nine years ago, when I was a graduate student at Penn State, I had a series of problems relating to the fact that:

  1. I am a paraplegic
  2. I was experiencing considerable pain in my right shoulder which I had dislocated following a serious fall.
  3. I was/am in my 60s having problems maintaining energy required for my work.
  4. The fact that I had survived cancer (Hodgkin’s disease聽 after receiving high doses of radiation.
  5. I was having trouble sleeping.
Bed on the floor of my small second bedroom. Devoting this bed to sleep should help me meet my objective: Asleep by 11 PM; awake at 6 A.M.
Bed on the floor of my small second bedroom. Devoting this bed to sleep should help me meet my objective: Asleep by 11 PM; awake at 6 A.M.

Dr. Jeffrey Jackson, a State College psychologist, decided to concentrate to the importance of establishing a sensible sleep schedule. He said it is a myth that as one gets older one requires less sleep. Indeed, sleep deprivation for the elderly is a serious health problem.


Yoga exercise before sleep:


Dr. Jackson, who is a behavioral psychologist, made the following suggestions:

  • Sleep in a room that is separate from the one in which I work.
  • Confine my activities in bed exclusively to sleep and making love.
  • Establish a sleep regime and ritual.
  • Reduce coffee consumption.

For nine years, I have failed to follow his excellent advice. My current health problems [3] require I make the reforms he suggested.


Establish a sleep ritual

  1. Put on pajamas to indicate it is time for bed. Hitherto, I have been sleeping in my clothes. Or throwing on a t-shirt. A formal garment聽meant to indicate: This is what one traditionally wears when sleeping as opposed to: These are the clothes I wear when awake.


聽2. Establish a prayer schedule to differentiate night from day

a) This is the prayer I say when I awake. This is my favorite Hebrew prayer.

"I thank You, living and eternal King, for giving me back my soul in mercy. Great is your faithfulness." [see footnote #]
“I thank You, living and eternal King, for giving me back my soul in mercy. Great is your faithfulness.”

As a child my beautiful mother Miriam recited Hebrew prayers with me.

My mother when she was 20.

My mother when she was 20.--shortly before she became pregnant with me. When in聽 June of 1947, she graduated from Hunter College, under Mother's undergraduate robes, I was noticing cooking inside her womb. Hunter was聽famous for Margorie聽 Morningstar, the聽 then聽 City College of New York school for women. Natalie Wood聽 played Margorie Morningstar in the popular film baseed on Leon Uris 'bestselling novel. Mother said frequently, "I attended Hunter College with Margorie Morningstar." In the same month that Mother received her bacheloor's degree in Arts from Hunter, Mother also received a bachelor's degree in Hebrew from a Hebrew college. My maternal grandmother complained frequently that Mother's dual bachelor's degrees while pregnant with me was "overdoing it."

聽The Hebrew prayer I said with my mother each night from the time I was 3 until I was 10 was the Shema.

Wikipedia on the Shema : “Shema Yisrael (or Sh’ma Yisrael; Hebrew: 砖职讈诪址注 讬执砖职讉专指讗值诇鈥; “Hear, [O] Israel”) are the first two words of a section of the Torah, and is the title (sometimes shortened to simply Shema) of a prayer that serves as a centerpiece of the morning and evening Jewish prayer services.

“The first verse encapsulates the monotheistic essence of Judaism: “Hear, O Israel: the LORD our God, the LORD is one” (Hebrew: 砖职讈诪址注 讬执砖职讉专指讗值诇 讛’ 讗直诇止讛值讬谞讜旨 讛’ 讗侄讞指讚), found in Deuteronomy 6:4, sometimes alternatively translated as “The LORD is our God, the LORD alone.” Observant Jews consider the Shema to be the most important part of the prayer service in Judaism, and its twice-daily recitation as a mitzvah (religious commandment).

“It is traditional for Jews to say the Shema as their last words, and for parents to teach their children to say it before they go to sleep at night.”

When it comes to prayer, my background is so intense I cannot imagine praying to God in any language but Hebrew. When I was 3 I was able to say the first two words of the Shema. I quickly memorized the three lengthy Hebrew paragraphs that represent a complete recitation of the Shema.

Here is a definitive sentence from the Book of Numbers from which portions of the Shema are taken. [See also Deutoronomy聽 6:4.]


Notice the vowels under and within the Hebrew letters. This is how this sentence looks without vowels. [Except for poetry, Hebrew books, magazine articles, and written language in Israel (and indeed in the Torah) are not reproduced with vowels.

“The earliest examples of written Paleo-Hebrew date from the 10th century BCE.聽” –Wikipedia

讗谞讬 讬讛讜讛 讗诇讛讻诐 讗砖专 讛讜讝转讬 讗转讻诐 诪讗专抓 诪讝专讬诐 诇讛讬讜转 诇讗诇讛讬诐 讗谞讬 讬讛讜讛 讗诇讛讻诐

Doris Day’s memorable good night song.

“When I was just a little girl
I asked my mother what will I be
Will I be pretty will I be rich
Here’s what she said to me/

“Que Sera Sera
Whatever will be will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que Sera Sera
What will be will be/”


Current impediments to remaining faithful to this critical sleep schedule

I am currently recovering from a dangerous MERSA infection. This is the third time I have had this infection. The first two times I was hospitalized . Once this summer. Once in October. The infection currently takes the form of manifesting itself in the form of truly disgusting boils. The boils are painful.

The summer’s boil appeared under my right arm. I was hospitalized at Mt. Nittany Medical Center. My physician lanced the boil. I was also given massive doses of antibiotics. At first the antibiotic Clindamycin was administered intravenously. Then, after the wound had healed and I was released from the hospital I was proscribed 300 MG every six hours. During the period I religious took the medication, I felt massive exhaustion. For over a week, I felt as if every waking moment was an exercise in swing under water with bricks tied to my feet.