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Nia Vardalos

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Dear Arianna, Sleep Challenge 2010 Is Hard!

Posted: 01/09/10 10:14 AM ET

Dear Arianna,

Reading your Sleep Challenge blog has inspired me. I decided to try it along with you and Cindi. I've always wanted to sleep with you both and figured this is my chance.

So, I started yesterday. I avoided coffee from noon on, put my daughter to bed at 7 p.m., and did some work in my office until 9 p.m. (I pretend I'm working on a screenplay, but I'll admit I only emailed holiday photos.)

At 9:30 p.m. I felt drowsy, so I quickly washed my face, slathered on the usual seven layers of cream, and snuggled into bed by 10 p.m. I was so proud, and dare I say ... a little smug. I thought about all the things I would accomplish today because I would be fresh and sparkly. I would exercise, play with my daughter, write dazzling dialogue, flirt with strangers. All because I would be rested.

But then I did something very wrong. I checked Twitter. And laughed. And started tweeting back. Soon, it was after midnight and I was wide awake. I realized what I'd done and quickly turned off my iPhone, computer, and brain. But I stared at the ceiling until 2 a.m. ... thinking of putting a mural up there. Maybe clouds? Too "dentist's office?" How about thunderclouds?

Anyway ...

At 6:30 am, my daughter jumped on my neck. I bolted awake, because I knew it was a monster trying to eat me. Sure, then she sweetly snuggled, but my heart was pounding in probable cardiac arrest. As my daughter snoozed gently on my numb arm, I knew there was no way I could go back to sleep. I counted ... four-and-a-half hours. I had gotten four-and a-half hours of sleep and have a very full day today.

At 7 a.m., I rolled (literally) out of bed onto the floor, crawled to my daughter's room, got her dressed for school and faced this day.

I feel fuzzy. The mirror shows me my face, like a piece of origami, has not unfolded yet. And by now, I should be on the treadmill, then writing. But it is taking me two cups of coffee to wake up, so I sit at my computer and read the Huffington Post, trying to remember what I was going to do last night. Oh yeah ... sleep more.

I will try again tonight.

Love, Nia