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Worry

I didn't sleep well all night.

Our alarm clock broke a few weeks ago and we haven't gotten around to replacing it. "No big deal," I told Susan, "I'll just set the television to come on at 6:30 and it will wake us up." She agreed, and I congratulated myself on saving $5.99 for a new clock. The only problem with this system is we don't have a clock in the room now to see what time it is and the TV doesn't always wake us up when it first comes on.

Last Sunday night, I had to reset the TV to wake me up at 6:00 because I had to be at Fenton's house by 6:45 to ride together to San Jose to a conference. (Yes, I can get ready and drive 15 miles across town in 45 minutes when I have to.) I reset the TV and asked Stephen to wake me up in case the TV didn't . . .

It was one of those "one eye open" nights. To make it worse, I kept dreaming that I slept in and didn't show up at Fenton's house on time. In each of the times I dreamed the dream, Fenton was gracious, and didn't get mad at me, but I kept re-dreaming the dream just to make sure he wasn't mad.

At the end of the dream, I would awake right to the edge of alertness to see if the TV was on, signaling that it was time to get up. I couldn't hear anything, but I didn't trust my hearing so I made myself open an eye to look at the TV to see if it was on or not. It wasn't. But then I started wondering if I was just dreaming that I opened my eye or did I really do it.

Fighting the urge to get up, I'd go back to sleep and dream about being late at Fenton's house again. Finally, I couldn't take it any more. I got up to see what time it was. The clock on my palm pilot said 6:58. I couldn't believe it-I'd overslept. Now I'd find out for real if Fenton was mad or not.

Just before I picked up the phone to apologize, I remembered I didn't set the clock on the palm pilot back last week, or did I simply dream that I didn't. I couldn't remember, so I walked into the boys room to look at their clock, sure enough it was just 5:58. I was worrying about nothing-everything was fine.

Except that I'd be tired all day because I worried all night.

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