Bedtime Routine and The Between

October’s theme for National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) is “Between.” So I thought, since I seem to have taken up the challenge of daily blogging this month, that today I’d talk about one of the ways I use the term “between.”

My bedtime routine goes like this: after brushing my teeth and changing into my PJs (really just a very soft oversize t-shirt), I climb into bed. Usually the window is open, at least a crack, to provide some fresh air. I grab a book from the stack next to my bed – I always have at least two books going at once, so I see which one is calling to me at the moment. I read for a while. It might be an hour or more, or if I’m tired, just for a few minutes. It’s a rare night when I don’t read before sleeping. Once I’m done, I make sure my dream journal and a pen are nearby, and turn out the light.

Then comes the Between part. I settle in and nestle my cheek down on the pillow, close my eyes, and let my mind roam. When I start to see images, sort of like dreams but more ephemeral, I know that I’ve reached the Between space, the magickal creative place between waking consciousness and sleep. It’s a bit like dreaming, but I’m still aware that I’m in my bed beginning to fall asleep. Sometimes I take part in conversations there, or travel to interesting places. The imagery is vivid and fantastical, yet somehow not as easily captured as standard dreams. I like it there in the Between. I let myself drift down into sleep like a falling autumn leaf.

Sometimes upon waking, as I emerge from my dreams, I find myself once again in the Between. Or perhaps it’s the reverse, since I’m moving in a different direction – maybe I’ll call it the Mirror Between. Usually when I’m waking up, my thoughts are gradually organizing themselves. I’m focused on recalling my dreams so I can write them down, on what I’m going to be doing today, on the friendly household sounds, and on the weather outside my window as I emerge into the waking world once again. The Mirror Between is like emerging from a dimly lit room into the sunshine.

I want to learn how to capture some of the insights I find in the Between space. I’m currently reading “Active Dreaming,” by Robert Moss, and he talks about how lots of creative people find interesting ideas, inventions and solutions in that liminal space Between waking and sleeping. Perhaps I’ll see if I can jot down some of my Between notions. The trouble with that is, I get most of them when I am falling asleep, and if I wake up enough to make notes, I’ll have to start over. Wait, that might not be so bad – I’d have even more chances to visit the Between!

Tell me what you think!

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