Unsleeping

I am the screen, the blinding light

Photo on 1-27-13 at 11.51 PM

 

I’m the screen, I work at night

Once upon a time (not that long ago) it would have been weird for me to be insomniac at midnight. Not because I was so good about going to bed, but because I never went to bed before one. Or two. Or later.

But my life has changed and I have changed and I go to bed around 10:30 most of the time, sometimes 11 if I’m living on the edge, and so tonight’s sleeplessness is legitimate, even if it’s something I’d have laughed at not so long ago.

Tonight, my brain is worrying at things, picking and poking and making note of what responds and how. I am digging into a comfortable, if terrible, niche. A niche I should leave alone. This is exactly the sort of thing I should not do, not if I want to maintain my happy days and sleep-filled nights.

I am afraid, sometimes, that I don’t actually want to maintain either of those things. That whatever has been wrong with me is so fundamentally wrong that I will never be right. I will never be okay. And even if I am okay, it will be a constant fight to stay there – a constant fight to stay away from obsession, from picking and poking, from sadness and sleeplessness and instability. That no matter how pleasant stability is, how easy and friendly normalcy feels, I will never be anything more than a visitor to those places. My home will always be depression, and I will always crawl back there.

I don’t know that this is the case. I certainly hope it’s not – at least, the part of me that is capable of hope and planning and foresight and going to bed at a reasonable hour hopes that it’s not. But the beast still lives there, somewhere, and when it stirs, it makes everyone else very uncomfortable. The beast wants to be in the dark, wants to feel broken, wants to be vindicated in its belief that things are too hard, and not even worth trying. The beast wants to be right about wrongs.

I wish I could just put it away and go to sleep. I wish I could stop gnawing.

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