4:46 a.m.: Can’t sleep. This is happening with increasing frequency. Not sure when’s the last time I had at least seven hours, even though that is my goal. Several times last week I was up until 4-5 a.m., then slept until 9. Forced myself to stay in bed until 10, but was wide awake.

Coffee is brewing. Bought Eight O’Clock coffee, because Consumer Reports says it was the best among the el-cheapo brands. We’ll see.

Appointment with Tanza at 11:30. Maybe I can nap for an hour after that. Meanwhile, cracking open The Self-Esteem Workbook I’ve had for weeks but never opened, likely because she says that sometimes, the book makes clients frustrated or angry. Was that a warning?

4:58 a.m.: Coffee’s passable. Ain’t Starbucks, but the whole bag costs less than a tall skinny mocha no whip.

5:08 a.m.: Checking my emails. Something weird going on the past two weeks, and sure enough, some emails were not getting through. So, cleared all my “rules,” then unassigned and reassigned my email account, which left me in suspended animation for a short while. It worked. Too well. Spam city. Oooh! A Borders coupon! Flagged!


Shouldn’t be reading emails. Procrastinating. So quiet. Can usually hear Bobby snoring all the way down the hall, but all doors are closed. Need background noise. Plopping in The Secret DVD. Been awhile. I need a boost.

5:17 a.m.: Bitter aftertaste. Must brush my teeth.

5:22 a.m.: Sleepy, but I have to take Trey to work at 7, but I need my car today, which means I have to leave in an hour. Going to go close my eyes.


6:25 a.m.: Forgot my alarm was set. Got a little sleep, but not finished.

8:43 a.m.: Much better. Passed out after I got back, would probably still be asleep if I hadn’t gotten a phone call about a meeting later today. Everyone’s gone, the day’s in full swing. Going to get some oatmeal. … CRAP. The hamster escaped. Again. I swear that little rat is doing chin-ups, push-ups and jogging in that wheel all for jail-break days like this. She’s easy to find – always tucked away in the pull-out bed under the big couch in the family room. It needs a new mattress because the rat keeps tearing up small pieces of it for her nests. She also steals kibble from the dog’s dish on the way to Hamster Utopia.

Need new furniture in there, anyway. Texted Sky, who’ll catch her when she gets home. Right now, I need to read some of this workbook.


9:10 a.m.: Big section on the importance of getting an appropriate amount of sleep. Har! I am nonetheless fascinated that the second chapter focuses on exercise, sleep and healthy eating.

10:50 a.m.: Put some fresh turkey wings, onions, peppers and spices in the slow cooker. Crock pots are a godsend.

1:51 p.m.: Back from Tanza, and from picking up my daughter from school. She’ll retrieve the rat while I continue to reflect on my latest therapy session, which was a little disconcerting.


I have a serious problem, I admit. And I’m not quite sure how to resolve it, but I believe Tanza when she says it’s the biggest issue blocking my way, even hindering my weight-loss efforts. I’ll state this problem – which, to Tanza, is clearly a self-esteem issue – as best I can: It is difficult for me to do/purchase things for myself, because I don’t feel I “deserve” them.

OK, I’m embarrassed to even write that, but it’s true. I especially have an issue saying the word “deserve.” Sounds so … arrogant. But she’s making me do it.

That’s a hairy topic best saved for tomorrow, I suppose. Have a meeting at 3 to prep for—at a nearby Starbucks, THANK GOD. Sessions with Tanza that skew sensitive are emotionally draining, and I was already running on empty. Need to change into a sweater set and some black pumps (!) and go get a triple grande soy mocha.


No whip.

If you can’t sleep, then get up and do something instead of lying there and worrying. It’s the worry that gets you, not the loss of sleep. ~ Dale Carnegie

Leslie J. Ansley is an award-winning journalist and entrepreneur who blogs daily for TheRoot. She lives in Raleigh, NC.