Insomnia, the inability to sleep, the most unwanted companion in the night. Tonight that visitor comes to me. I pulled the short straw without ever knowing. I lost the bet without ever knowing I was in the game. I am the chosen one, chosen to have no respite from the day. I will be denied sleep. Maybe someone, somewhere, is getting a good night’s sleep solely because I’m not. Is that how the world works? Does the universe operate as in “Those Who Walk Away From Omelas” where someone suffers so all can be happy? Certainly my insomnia can’t be compared to the suffering in that story, and yet I feel that it should be my turn to be sleeping, peacefully oblivious, my mind allowed to shut down and shut off for a few hours. Insomnia not only robs me of sleep; it sentences my mind to ceaseless thought. Like a 24-hour news channel, my mind reports my news only to me. All night. Also, like a 24-hour news channel, it repeats often, so that some of the thoughts scrolling through my brain scroll again and again. Yes, I have reporting, and I also have a scroll bar, or at least it seems that way. Such is my weary mind so bent on crowding me with news that it’s filling up empty time with coverage of events past, some good and some bad, and then events to come, so that I may spend part of the night with my old friend Anxiety, too. What a pair, Insomnia And Anxiety;I think they must always travel together. They work for the same imp who steals souls by stealing sleep.
My lids are heavy, and my eyes are tired. My body aches from fatigue, but my own personal cable channel (the one in my head) refuses to quiet. No matter how much my body may scream for relief, it can’t drown out the anchorman/woman in my head.
Will I drift off by dawn? My husband sleeps soundly right next to me. I find myself grateful that he, at least, is resting. By the time his alarm shouts its hideous sound, my mind will finally run out of news, and fatigue will win over insomnia. I’m most grateful that I won’t rise to an alarm in a few hours. I’ve been here before….I’ve been here when a sleepless night was followed by a hard morning to rise.
Perhaps if I put down the computer one more time, click off my lamp one more time, and put my head on the pillow, I will drift off to sleep. I’m willing to try. I’ll hope now that the dog or dear husband doesn’t begin to snore when I do…..