I used to sleep like a baby, and not one that’s teething. Even my lover’s snores were a distant soundtrack to my astral explorations. These nights, I awake to the heater going off. I hear everything speaking to me, whispering my name, pulling me away from my dream world. My sleep got lighter during pregnancy, but now it’s a whole new story. My sub-conscious awaits the cry of a baby that is not here. The Mama in me wants to feed a ghost in the middle of the night the milk that has already dried up. I hear the sound of a ticking clock from another room. What is it telling me? What is it time for? I crave sleep, I want to sleep, but sleep does not come. There is the new pain under my right shoulder blade, the thirst for something that cannot be quenched, the uncomfortable pillow, the bladder a quarter full, and then there are the thoughts. I watch them hover over me. Who am I? Who have I become? I am a night owl. An insomniac.
Nathan rents movies that he falls asleep to. I watch them because I can’t sleep. Most of them are crappy movies from the redbox that I don’t want to watch but I can’t turn them off because then I’m stuck with my movie, which is worse.
Sometimes I cry to exhaust myself. I remember falling asleep after crying as a child. It comes to me easily, almost too naturally. All I have to do is think of Leif, connect to that space of emptiness in my soul, and tears come up and roll out in numbers, like armies of ants. I feel them trickle down my cheeks, entertained by the sensations they create. The wells empty out but I still can’t sleep. I’m left with a stuffy nose and a headache.
I scan my thoughts that come and go, trying hard to detach and observe. I don’t know where they come from, but there are so many. I’m flooded with inquiries, with the childlike curiosity of what this life means. What is my purpose here? I’m searching for the real in reality, breaking down solidity into particles, concepts into words, into syllables. I’m learning a whole new alphabet. I’m learning. This experience has become my teacher. With each new question, the burst of every new bubble I create, I’m taught something significant.
Perhaps I needed all this to wake up from the illusion of a perfect tomorrow, to bring me into the now. As I lie there awake, there is only the now. There is only the being, here in this space, and feeling what it’s like to be human. In the sleepless hours of the night, under the fullness of the gleaming Leo moon, I am awake to the world, completely open to receive. As I finally surrender, sleep creeps up and I’m cradled in a womb, drifting into the silence of the dawn.