I sit here awake past midnight once again. I have been a chronic insomniac for as long as I can remember. At times I manage to retain a pattern, but the realities of life make that very hard at times. So the night owl is out again, desperately flying and singing me out of sleep. I judge myself for this inability to sleep, but I see how silly that is. Because it is negative thoughts (such as that) that keep me from sleeping in the first place. As an artist, I try to believe it’s just the creative energy inside me, willing me to stay awake and think some more. Because when I think, I create both negative and positive thoughts, all of which prevent me from closing my eyes. What insight will come to me next, what truth will I learn? Oh the curse of the anxious, introvert!
I’ve been on a journey of learning to relax, accept life, and be at peace. Through activities such as meditation and yoga, I feel the importance of being centered. Living in the present helps to quiet the thoughts in our minds, and accept only what is real now. Here’s a poem that captures my experience with sleep issues. I hope all you insomniacs can find comfort in knowing you’re not alone. And I wish you luck on finding your peace.
Clouds of Insomnia
I can’t sleep once again.
Toss and turn, bang my head.
Turn off brain!
Back to black…
No more thinking of the day.
No more counting of the ways,
you could have changed.
You should have saids…
Can’t imagine all this dread.
Counting sheep or shit instead.
Doesn’t matter; it’s not working.
Never does, and never will.
My brain cannot imagine death.
And this is what it is in bed.
A silencing of her thoughts.
Her synapses, not meant for rest.
And as I try, a futile test.
From younger days, my mind awake.
Now older yet no wiser now.
Thoughts spinning, spinning.
Confused with doubt.
Not sure I can…
dream of anything…but my regrets.
The letters, let downs, letting go.
Swirling letters to form my words.
Now hazy, only starts…no ends.
I found that feeling for which I longed.
My eye lids heavy, and my mind lighter.
The fog is creeping,
And the final thought holds onto me.
As the sun has risen and the light seeps in.
Now it is dying, and I find sleep.
Now I am dying, and I can dream.
3/23/10 —–Preeti Pathak