Sunday, August 28, 2011


People who know me can attest to the fact that I am an avid fan of multi-tasking. However, I am most drawn to the tasks that can be performed while I am sleeping. You have heard about them, ‘earn money while you sleep’, ‘become smarter while you sleep’ and my most often tried, ‘lose weight while you sleep’. Of course, I have not mastered any of these techniques but that doesn’t mean I am not open to the idea that some vigorous sawing of logs can’t manifest a desired goal.

I recently came across the title of an article, ‘You can become gorgeous in your sleep’. This thrilling promise intrigued me and I was compelled to read some of the suggested methods but before I tried them I researched the aging process. Big mistake.

I found that our skin is composed of two main layers, the epidermis and the dermis. Both of these diminish in aging and the dermis thins by about twenty percent. The blood supply drops off with time and wrinkles develop. That coupled with the loss of collagen, a cement-like protein that holds cells together is what causes appearance of aging. What I found is that I am literally coming unglued. This gives the ‘War on Aging’ movement a whole new meaning for me even although I consider myself a lover not a fighter. The underlying message here is the older I get, the better I was.

The difference between my earlier attempts at sleep goals and the one I am attempting now is in the preparation. Getting richer, smarter or thinner involved affirmations whispered to me while I slumbered. Obviously, my subconscious is a much more resistant opponent than I suspected. I think it will take a lot more than encouraging whispers for me to become rich, smart or thin.

The first suggestion for waking up gorgeous was to sleep on your back. Now I don’t know about you but after I fall asleep I don’t know what position I assume although I have at times woke up in the duck and cover position that I learned in elementary school. I would have to be resourceful to insure I stayed on my back all night. I asked my husband to straddle a chair over me once I found the most comfortable position on my back with my head slightly elevated. Wedging myself between the legs of a kitchen chair was the only way I could be sure to maintain this corpse-like posture.

The second suggestion was to use a humidifier in the bedroom but between my husband’s resonate snore and the constant hissing of the humidifier, my dreams involved snakes sucking madly on straws long after their beverage was gone. I woke to my own screams, sat up rigid as a tombstone and bumped my forehead against the wooden dowels on the back of the chair. My husband was happy to hear I decided to discontinue these two techniques. Besides, I was tired of waking up like I had just entered a wet-tee shirt contest.

I washed my hair and combed a deep conditioner into it. I put on a shower cap as suggested so I wouldn’t ruin my sheets. Then I diligently applied Frownies (patches that adhere to your skin while you sleep to prevent your face from making the facial expressions that cause wrinkles)and afterward applied a thick ultra-hydrating moisturizer. Next I glopped petroleum jelly on my eyelashes (to prevent them from becoming brittle and falling out), hands and feet. I wore gloves and socks to seal in the moisturizer. Next I applied several layers of medicated lip balm the color of old lace and slipped in my teeth whitening trays.

Words cannot describe the expression on my husband’s face as I slipped into bed next to him. So I won’t try. When I turned out my light, the only thing I said was, “No more waking up to split ends, yellow teeth, a pale, pasty complexion or droopy bags under my eyes.”

His response was, “This is how you’re going to wake up gorgeous?”
I awoke early the next morning with the shower cap over my face as I gasped for air. The teeth whitening trays were lying neatly on my husband’s chest. My socks and gloves were on the end of the bed and the sheets were mottled with grease stains. I must have rubbed the petroleum jelly into my eyes while I slept because it took hours for the blurriness to go away. It was when I looked into the mirror that I realized that I am gorgeous. The petroleum jelly had provided a sort of Joan Collins filter to my naked eye and all the lines and wrinkles on my face had vanished! I had discovered the secret! This is the reason God planned for our eyesight to diminish…so we can’t see what happens to our bodies. I have limited my beauty regimen to one thing. Petroleum jelly. Now we’re all gorgeous. If only I could convince everyone to use it.

The last thing I’m going to say is, “younger people, why don’t you mind your own damn business!” You’ll get there too one day. The next time I see one of you jogging past my house with your three-hundred dollar running shoes and hand-held dumbbells I’m going to pick up a rock the size of a fibroid tumor and holler, “Serpentine, runner… serpentine!”

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