Posts Tagged With: sleep study

Day 542: Making Meaning

When something happens we can’t understand or explain, what do we do? Often, we try to make meaning of what just happened.

Sometimes, we can’t.  

If something upsetting happens, we often look to ascribe blame — against ourselves and others.

I actually don’t know why I’m writing these words right now. They do relate to a discussion I witnessed in a therapy group yesterday, but I can’t make meaning of how this topic fits with some photos I want to show you.

I think I should have stuck with my original title for this post: “Some photos I took on Wednesday.” That would have worked, really easily.

Why did I change the title, the way I did? I can’t make meaning of that, right now.

Now what should I do?  And who is to blame for this less-than-optimal blogging situation? Me, you, or somebody else?

Who cares? Let’s just look at the photos.

Here’s a little item I got many years ago, which I keep in my office:


How do we make meaning of THAT?  What the heck is it?  Is it animal, vegetable, or mineral?

I’ll tell you this: it’s made out of wood.

Any guesses?

I’ll give you a hint. It’s a kind of transformer.


 I mean, it’s like a transformer because it (1) has moving parts and (2) turns into something else.  However, I may have misled you with that last image, or raised your expectations too high. My thing is not quite that intricate, flashy, or up-to-date. I hope you still like it, though.

Here it is:


Here’s the meaning I ascribe to that: it looks, to me, like a wondrous, special and unusual place to stay.

Sometimes I do stay in unusual places. Like, last night  I had a sleep-over at a hospital.


Now I’m misleading you, again. That is NOT where my sleep study was.  That’s actually a hospital for children.

I’m not a child, so I don’t belong there. How do I feel about that?


If you have trouble making meaning of that, I’ll be more direct. I’m very glad I’m no longer a child.

One of the many advantages of being an adult? You get more freedom of expression.

For example, you can take whatever pictures you like and present them as you choose:





I’m actually not sure what I’m trying to convey in this post. Which might make it difficult for you to make meaning of it all.

I will tell you some feelings I had while I was writing this post: I prefer being home to being in hospitals. I don’t like medical machines attached to me, at night. And, based on this part of my sleep-study, I will, most likely, getting a CPAP machine, to bring into my home:


(I found that image here.)

Eeek!  I just freaked myself out, just as I did when I googled “sleep study” in March.

Now I want to show you something I saw at home before I left before my sleep study,  asleep without a machine:


Right before I snapped this photo, my boyfriend Michael said this about Oscar:

I can’t make head or tails of that cat.

 Which, of course, is another way to make meaning.


Before I end this post, I want to tell you this:  I wrote most of this last night, before I left for the hospital.

I’m writing this ending at yet another hospital, where I work.

The sleep study went better than I expected.  I slept fine with the CPAP machine. And I think it’s actually going to help me feel better (despite my old, childhood-acquired negative feelings about medical machines).

I will probably write more about this, perhaps in tomorrow’s post. For now, here are some images from this morning (and feel free to make meaning of them, or not):





Thanks to transformers of all kinds, to Boston-based hospitals and medical centers; to  people who do their best in making meaning (and changes in their lives); to sleep-study expert Lori, her daughter Allie, and Allie’s friend Isabella; and to you — of course! — for the meaning you are making, today.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 451: Studies in Sleep

So I bring my laptop with me to my sleep study, see, and WordPress is blocked at this hospital. Lori, my sleep study specialist, tells me she is surprised by this, since the blog “Boobs & Loubs” is allowed. I ask, natch, “How do you know that?” And she explains it and it’s entirely innocent, but I can’t tell you the details because I am distracted by all the stuff she’s putting on me.

So why is my writing tone so different in this post? Personally, I’ve been hearing a movie gangster voice, like Jimmy Cagney’s, in my head, since I started writing this.

I think my tone is different tonight for several reasons: (1) It is entirely new and alien for me to be writing a post on my friggin’ phone (have I mentioned that I do NOT like the iPhone keyboard?!!), (2) I don’t know how to access many of my beloved writing options like bullet points and numbered lists right now, (3) isn’t that enough? and (4) oh, yeah, there’s the little matter of my writing this from a hospital room, at 10 PM, the night before a posting.

Actually, this doesn’t look like a hospital room, to me.


Nice, huh?

So what else do I want to tell you, before I put this post and myself to bed?

I wanted to tell you that Lori and I talked non-stop for the 30 minutes she spent attaching all the sleep-monitoring equipment to me.






She told me lots of interesting info, including the fact that she has a guinea pig named Mr. Brown, who is really a female, but whom she and her 6-year-old daughter Allie couldn’t switch to calling something else, after they discovered their mistake.

Before I took the photo of Lori, above, I told her I like to put pictures of kind people in my blog. Lori said, “Oh, I don’t know if I’m really that kind.”

I said, “0h, I think you are.”

The story about the guinea pig clinched it.

I am going to save this post, right now, so I can relax and get ready to be sleep studied by Lori and company. My plan is to get this posted tomorrow morning, around Standard Posting Time. (Added in the morning: The automatic scheduling I tried didn’t work, for some reason. I’ll post this when I get to work.)

We shall see if trying new things go well, here in Sleep Central.

Thanks to Lori, to other people who love what they do, to those who study and are studied (including guinea pigs), and to you — of course! — for reading this, today.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , | 28 Comments

Day 450: ABC’s (and an F).

Ann’s Ambivalence and Associations

Yesterday — in Day 449: Variations on “I Don’t Want to Go” — I wrote about the past and the future, regarding some hospital stays of mine, including a sleep study scheduled for tonight.

In a comment, Kate @ Did That Just Happen wrote:

Well, I’m not sure if you wrote all of this just to avoid saying you don’t want to go, or if you are okay going… You’ve been hearing “I don’t want to go” out of others, and you shared some of your own experiences – but since you didn’t say you didn’t want to, then I just have to go with your written words and wish you well! I would imagine that it won’t be pleasant, but I bet you get a lot of good information out of it and that information can only help as you go forward!
Plus, you have a concert to look forward to!

… which I’ve been thinking about a lot. I wrote a reply yesterday, but I want to write another one, now:

Dear Kate,

I’m not sure, either.

I seem to have some fear, that is all out of proportion to what’s going to happen tonight in my sleep study at the hospital. At the same time, I agree that I will probably get a lot of useful information out of it.

I know that tonight’s sleep study will not be like my hospital stays when I was a kid.

Actually, that’s not true.  I’ve been told that they are going to put gook and electrodes in my hair and electrodes on my body tonight.  When I was a kid in the hospital, I REALLY hated that (especially the gooky hair part, which only happened once).

So, Kate, I would say that I Do Want to Go AND I Don’t Want to Go.

Your fan,

Ambivalent Ann

As I was writing that reply to Kate, I was having associations to the Gooky Hair thing they did to me was I was 8 or 9 (they did an EEG study on me, in the hospital, to rule out epilepsy, because I was fainting, because of my heart).

I thought,

If I  google images for  “sleep study,” maybe I’ll find something that will make me feel better and less anxious about tonight.


Eeeeek!  I found that image from “Sleep Studies Suck Ass.”   I’m not kidding.

Here’s a Googled Image that didn’t scare me, quite as much:


I found that image at

For some reason, I’m feeling less anxious now.


In response to yesterday’s post, Sitting On My Own Sofa wrote:

This is beautiful. A beautiful piece of writing and a beautiful glimpse of what it is to be human and fragile and 13 or any age at all.

 And I replied, “I was wondering what you would write about this piece. And, of course, it was beautiful.”

For some reasons, I’m feeling less anxious now.


Compassion and Cats

In response to yesterday’s post, Mel Wild wrote:

Ann, I think God must’ve installed a very good heart full of tenderness and compassion in you at that young age. It shines every time you write (your cats know it too!). You can certainly know that our thoughts and prayers ARE going with you.

Also, Cat wrote to me, blessedly soon after I posted:

beautiful cats. hope everything works out okay

For several reasons, I’m feeling less anxious now.


In response to yesterday’s post, two readers — Louise Gallagher and Mark Bialczak  — posted comments, where they called me “my friend.”

For many reasons, I’m feeling less anxious now.

Thanks to Dooley Noted (for the first photo, for his awesome attitude, AND for being from my beautiful Boston … I think), to all my amazing readers — those I quoted here AND those I did not — and to you, of course, for being here, today.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , | 28 Comments

Blog at