I picked a lousy night to test-drive my new weighted blanket, which arrived yesterday afternoon. I'd gotten home late from my fellowship, cranky and uncomfortable (new shoes = bad move), and the first thing I did after receiving a bear hug from Josh was to pop open the blanket box. The blue chenille was luxuriously soft, a definite plus in my tactile book. It was supremely heavy to lift when folded onto itself (just about 17 pounds), and the two of us ran it into the bedroom and I snuck underneath the cover. Immediately, I went from my usual Category 5 hurricane to quiet. Pretty awesome. Whereas normally I'd feel the need to keep my limbs in motion, as it's hard to slow down, the weight was like a firm grip, keeping me in place.
But the evening never allowed for some pre-sleep slowdown. Josh had paperwork to tend to, and I flitted from room to room, nervous about my psychopathology presentation (due today) and excitedly convinced that I'd immediately pass out under my new sensory tool. I actively tried to get sleepy as I lay under the cover reading my Nook, but I think I was too wound up to be successful, and so I eagerly shut my Nook and settled under the blanket for sleep.
The blanket is much heavier than my makeshift weighted blankets (the usual six stacked tall above me), and I found it hard to adjust to the temperature difference as well as the weight difference. I guess there's only so much a blanket can do - it can't make me sleep, but it can relax me, and overall I found that it did just that. When I went to turn over in my frustrated sleeplessness, I found it hard to readjust the cover, and it almost felt like I was fighting against the weight instead of embracing it. Needless to say, any changes to the sleep environment often mean (for me at least) a change in pattern, and as we know, this particular SPDer is keen on her patterns. In retrospect, I should've saved my new tool for a less wired and stressful night.
I'll try it again tonight. I like the concept of the blanket and its abilities to get me to immediately tune out other powerful sensory stimuli. It's not unlike a fire blanket, and often the bombardment of the sensory world lights me ablaze. (Makes me wonder if that level of calm is what the rest of you all experience in your normal lives.) If all else fails, and I can't adjust to it at night, it will still serve as an important part of my afternoon/evening sensory-arsenal. Stay tuned.