So a few weeks ago I was sitting on my bed recording a new ukulele video, when all of a sudden I really had to sneeze. If you were watching, for a split second you’d think I’m going to do something funny, but instead I stopped singing and just got very still. I paused for a few seconds, and then before you know what’s happening, my nose began to flare wildly like I’m some angry bull, my head reared backwards like I’m in The Exorcist, and then I’m coming back at the screen a mile a minute and microscopic germs and mucus are flying out of my nose.
A true beauty.
Luckily, I caught all of this on video. I have since watched it roughly 800 times, not just because it is literally the funniest thing I’ve ever seen, but also because I’ve never seen myself sneeze. I mean, have you ever seen yourself sneeze? Since it’s not something I can do on command, I’ve never been able to watch myself do it in front of a mirror. Plus, your eyes close when you sneeze, so its physically impossible to see yourself while its happening. But still, watching it on video is friggin’ awesome! Its like everything shuts down for a couple of seconds, your body ejects the piece of dust bothering your cilia, and then everything is honky dory and back to normal without you ever consciously having to fix the problem.
Probably around the 500th time I was watching myself, I got to thinking about all the other neat things our bodies do without us knowing. Breathing does not require a conscious effort nor does our brain sending nerve impulses to all our body parts. Cool.
But now that I think of it, my body does things I’m not aware of, like, all the time. For instance, my body simply loves to let everyone know when I’m nervous by turning my cheeks the color of a baboon’s bottom. It also just loves to do this thing where I get really sweaty when talking to someone I like (which is just so helpful, because its not like, you know, I don’t already know how much I like this person.)
Sleeping is the perfect example of a time when our bodies can do some amazing things, because we’re not awake and yet can do things like breathe, dream, and even sometimes sleepwalk. Recently my body has been doing this really enjoyable thing where my legs float up in the air when I’m sleeping. This used to happen to me a lot in high school where I’d be sleeping on my stomach, I’d wake up, and my legs would be bent up in the air at a 90 degree angle. But now even more enjoyable is I’ll wake up in the middle of the night on my back with my legs just casually floating up in the air. I have to say to them “Hey guys, wanna come on back down here and chill with you know, everybody else?” An even better variation on this is when I’ll be on my back with my knees bent and my feet on the bed, but my legs are crossed. Good to know I’m keeping it classy, even while sleeping.
But this all must be stressed induced because it doesn’t happen all the time, and it has certainly never happened when I’m sharing the bed with someone (THANK GOODNESS.) And while its embarrassing to admit it happens, I’m still truly fascinated by the number of odd things my body can do while asleep. I’m also lucky to have an excellent (read: extremely tolerant) roommate who has gotten so used to my bizarre sleeping habits, she isn’t phased by them anymore. Although it does help she has her own super-fun things her body does without her knowing, including waking up with her pants off and next to her because she’s gotten too hot while sleeping. But still, its a tough world out there and its important to know somebody’s got your back - even if it is your own body.