Slumberous Journeys: A Tale of Sleepwalking

March 21, 2011 at 12:33 am 4 comments

My Sleepwalking Role Model

I sleepwalk.  It’s quite terrible really.  Terrifying.  Troublesome.  Tremendously treacherous.  You get the drift.  But yeah, I sleepwalk–all over the place.  But mainly I sleep walk when I am in strange new worlds.  Right now my sleep walking habits are very much on my mind.  See,  I just spent the past 13 hours in a car with my mother, my younger sister, and her best friend reliving some of our greatest vacation moments–quite a few which involve my slumberous journeys in strange places. Add to that the fact that I am currently writing this from a strange new place, and you can see why my slumber roaming is right at the front of the old brain here.

The first time I walked in my sleep–aka slept walked–I was on vacation visiting my grandparents.  I woke up alone, standing in a dark place, surrounded by walls, thin pieces of plastic and fabric hitting me in the face.  Unable to move.  Trapped.  I was trapped, so being a very reasonable young lady of about ten I started to scream.  Loud shrieks of HELP and GRANDMOMMA! Five minutes later my equally terrified grandmother found me in the corner of the guest walk in closet.  I apparently had opened the door, walked in, shut the door and then proceeded to get lost in the corner of her overcrowded extra space filled with old suites, dresses, and so many shoes I am surprised that I could even walk into the space.  That was the first time I rambled around a strange place.

There have been various other random nights were I wander around.  Once I called my brother who was at college at the time.  It was 2:00 am.  Then there was the time I woke up after a particularly vivid dream about HGTV and all the furniture in my room had been moved around.  Another time, I started to sleepwalk during a huge storm in which the power went out.  My mother slapped a flashlight into my slumbering hand and then proceeded to tell me to look for the matches.  I remember waking up in the dark, holding a flashlight in the middle of a storm, wondering how in the world I got there, and where there was exactly.  That’s the thing about when I sleepwalk.  I look completely normal.  No Zombie Lizzie roaming the halls in search of dream brains.  Nope.  I simply walk around.  Sometimes I talk.  Most of the time I can even have conversations–which I never remember in the morning.  Both my brother and my mother have had nice discussions with me while I was sleeping.  I understand that I am quite eloquent for an unconscious person.

Now, right now I am sitting in my hotel room dreading the night.  See the thing is, I ALWAYS sleep walk when: a.) I have to share a bed.  My subconscious apparently just does not like to share.  Probably something to do with being a middle child and b.) I am sharing a hotel with my mother. She must give me bad sleep mojo or something. Thankfully, we are not sharing a bed tonight, but my mom and I are sharing a hotel room. (key dramatic music!)

Most recently we shared a room and a bed on a vacation to New Mexico.  Apparently, around 1:30 am one night I jumped out of bed, sprinted to the window, and started banging on the glass with the palms of my hands yelling, “I gotta get off! Morgan (my sister by-the-way), you don’t understand! I’ve gotta get off!”  Then there was the trip to Maine where my mom and I shared a room.  I ended up pacing our room muttering, “It’s happening again.  It’s happening again.”  I then tried to sleep on both the couch and the floor.

What will happen this time?  Am I fated to once more wander through the hotel room muttering, screaming, and dreaming? I certainly hope not! And I am sure my travel companions agree. Sleepwalking can be quite scary for both the people walking and the people watching.  I know I have scared friends on more than one occasion.  I have also caused quite a few laughs like the time I slept walked at high school at a sleep-over at my friend Becca’s.  After falling asleep on the couch, I put my feet into the trash can next to me, stood up inside said trash can and yelled, “Becca! I hate your house and I am never coming back” after which I promptly sat right back down and closed my eyes.  I love Becca’s house.  I have been back many times since. I have no idea what I was thinking.

Best Case Scenario: You sleepwalk and fall in love at the same time. Multitasking!

Now some of the heroines in my favorite romances also have been cursed by that damned Morpheus and walk around in their sleep.  It gives me comfort to know that I am not alone.  In Iris Johansen‘s epic historical romance, Storm Winds, the heroine Juliette sleepwalks after she witnesses a terrible massacre.  Her nighttime activities–trying to run back the abbey where she saw her friends brutally murdered–leads to a very dramatic conflict between Juliette and the hunky hero.  Sigh.  I mean I don’t want to witness a mass murder caused by revolutionaries during the French Revolution–that would be disturbing on so many levels–but instead of having to have my mother take me back to bed, I would love for something positive to come out of my strange sleeping habits.  Like a dramatic hero rushing in to rescue me from walking in front of a milk van moment. Or something. I don’t necessarily want a sexy moment.  Just a dramatic moment.  There’s a difference as the romances taught me: dramatic sleep walking moment: cool.  Sexy sleep walking moments: disturbing.


Worst Case Scenario: You sleepwalk and fall into social ruin at the same time. Nightmare!

While Johansen’s sleep walking scene is beautifully done, other romances take a real creeper approach to the whole walking around unconscious thing.  One romance that I was not a fan of AT ALL, Seduction Wears Sapphires by Renee Bernard really crossed into the “umm excuse me?!?” zone. Not cool. Not cool at all.  In it the heroine occasionally walks around in her sleep, and the hero seriously contemplates bedding–aka having SEX with–with her… while she is asleep.  Wait, let me rephrase: he  seriously contemplates bedding a virginal lady while she’s asleep.  Call me crazy, but that is NOT a wake up call I would like.  “Oh hey honey, good morning, so yeah, I am currently in the process of stealing your virtue, taking your innocence, and ruining your reputation.  Just hold still for a second.”  Is it just me or is that really wrong? Plus, the hero was all smug, congratulating himself on only groping her sleeping form and not going all the way.  A real prize winner.  Obviously, Bernard has never had the misfortune to actually sleep walk or else she has a super kinky mind.

So there you go.  Sleepwalking in romances.  Oh the crazy connections I sometimes make.  What do you think about sleepwaling sex? Am I being too sensitive?

And just remember dear friends, if it is late at night, I am in a strange place and walking around with a slightly dazed look in my eye–please go find my romantic hero so he can keep me from reorganizing the pantry, calling some stranger, or some other ridiculous thing that I can’t even imagine. May my covers bind me to my bed.


Entry filed under: Ramblings on Romance, Random Life of Lizzie. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Spencer  |  March 21, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    LOL! This is hilarious! I never knew you were a sleepwalker. That would definitely freak me out. You can literally make connections with ANYTHING in your life and romance books — I love it! I’m going to have to go through my own experience catalog and make a life/romance book connection 😉 Blog post to come soon!

    • 2. Lizzie Poteet  |  March 21, 2011 at 5:06 pm

      Now all I need is to actually find my romantic lead. Sigh. Where have all the alpha males gone?!? I will def look for your own romance/life connections! I am sure there are some good ones.

  • […] in love and get concussions….my friend has “love concussions.” I sleepwalk….one of my favorite heroine sleepwalks. Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ character sets a lot by lists…I can list until the cows come […]

  • 4. Am I Really What You Want? « Reading Romantically  |  April 29, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    […] They got how I am a GRIT and not a WASP.   Another searched sleepwalking habits, they got how I once got lost in a closet.  I really don’t know if that’s what they were looking for… But I hope you […]


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