Off Duty

Writing is not a duty for me. It has always been a privilege, a time of great feelings, a mountain-top joy, and . . . an undeserved grace of a lifetime. 

Some of my friends in church say it is my assignment from above, and therefore I am duty bound to do it well. I try.  

My writing hours are thus: the actual computer time is all day; the thinking time is all night.

That's probably why I sometimes (okay, often) can't go to sleep when I need to. I have blogged about this malady and have accepted the fact that it is called insomnia, but my search for a non-ingested cure didn't cease.

Tony had been helping in this quest. He made time for a reunion with old friends last month because the speaker was Dr. Jaime Galvez Tan, former secretary of the Dept. of Health, who is an advocate of no-expense cures. Aside from being a consultant of the WHO, UNCEF, UNDP, UNFPA, World Bank, Asian Development Bank and USAID, Dr. Galvez has delivered lectures on herbs and natural cures in practically all parts of the world.

Dr. Tan also has a daily radio program where he gives medical tips to ordinary people on dealing with their ailments at minimal, or no expense. 

During the Q and A, Tony asked about my recent sleeping disorder. Dr. Tan's simple advice was, “Sleep with a sleep mask so everything becomes pitched dark. In the dark, your body's melatonin recharges.” 

(Melatonin is a natural body hormone. When darkness occurs, our pineal gland goes to work and actively produces melatonin, which is released into the blood. When melatonin levels in the blood rise, we feel less alert. Sleep becomes inviting.)

I happened to mention this to my godson Budik, an international flight steward. He readily gave me his personal sleep mask as a gift.  It says Off Duty which, I realize, is now true. When I tune off my thoughts, I actually cease to write.  

As soon as I hit the sack with my sleep mask on, my overactive mind winds down and I am out like a light.
Yawn. Thank you for another good night's rest, Lord. Please keep Budik safe, on or off duty. Amen.

P.S. After writing this post, my doorbell rings and my friend G hands me over a package with these. Surrounded by caring friends, how can one still lose sleep?

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