Mr. Sandman, Send Me A Dream.

Try as I might, I just can't hit the 'snooze' button.

They say humans spend a third of their lives sleeping. Of that time, I spend a third laying in bed swearing, a third sitting in the kitchen eating ham & a third rolling around in a half-awake dream state with the devil laying Pictionary in my brain. Where did it all go wrong? Insomnia. Discusszzzzzzz.

I’ve always had an overactive imagination, & can’t remember a time when I didn’t spend at least half an hour before sleep hurtling through wormholes down the rabbit hole of my mindoli. Through childhood, this tended to be an exciting time, like a fairground for the subconscious. I’d lie there staring up at my glow-in-the-dark stickers [the universe was blurry with my glasses off], enjoying the weight of a balled-up cat on my feet, kaleidoscope friends’ faces with storybook scenery & a pencil case of colour.
Teenagedom was reserved for a tour de farce of sexual fantasies & idea fireworks for stunts I could pull at school. With the 4/4 chug of my heart in my ears – a sound I’ve never been too comfortable with – I allowed my engine to power down, sage in the knowledge that I’d always manage to drift off.

When I hit 18, something changed. Dark emotions weaved in like Pacman’s ghosts & screwed with the controls. My single mattress was adrift in space, galaxies outside my comfort zone. I was directly next to a train line & under a flight path, one day a train & plane went by at the same time & the phone rang & I screamed. For weeks on end I’d still be awake at 4am. I’d just left the warm arms of a relationship & was now tossing & turning like a rotisserie chicken, playing solo Twister where every colour is black. I drew the vicious circle of not sleeping & then worrying about not sleeping. My sticker-stars were replaced by the corrupt glow of the internet, the only weight on my feet was unsorted washing. 

They say the first thing you should do when you can’t sleep is get up [James Brown often sang about this]. My testament to this theory is a cache of virus-ridden computers, a discography of “poor man’s Beck” acoustic demos, half-arsed attempts at Peter Carey novels & the kinds of snacks that would get you kicked off a cooking show. After alphabetising my medication, I’d return to my usual program of: whywouldhesayathinglikethat! Maroonprismdissipatesintoyellowjellybean! Mustpaymobilebillcanborrowoffmum! Sadlovelybushwalkmemorytrees! Beatlesmelodylionsfacewaterslidebreasts! Beerwithkatrinatomorrowvolcanicdoublefacedclowncrayonbutterscotchscottishcloudstainedglasswhistlingsandrasully! Still not ******* asleep! 4:39! Tomorrow’s centrelinkkk be at gig at 6 sleep till 12no11no12okay 1130yes! No! Can you ********** twice in a night?

The next day I’d awake like a smashed ant & try to conjure Edward Norton from Fight Club. At least he made walking around like a zombie look cool [scratch the blowing up credit card companies schtick].

Today, things are a bit better, & I’ve grown more confident in my ability to adapt. I’m tired of running at half capacity. I’m trying to funnel the fallout into a routine of exercise & early mornings. There are other practical things like no caffeine after four, getting up at the same time each day, & no lolcats before bed [SAD FACE]. Others have suggested warm milk, BBC World Service & ************ [all at once]. I feel like there’s a world of meditation out there I’m yet to explore, & I think of my mind as a startled stallion that can be handled & tamed. Oh for rain on the roof, freshly washed sheets & snuggling deep under the covers. Oh for drifting into a beautiful dream where you’re flying high above the navy ocean, skimming the sunset clouds. 

blehtolife blehtolife
22-25, F
1 Response May 11, 2012

You are too cool :)

i know, right? ;)