What is it Like Living with Insomnia?
Days bleed into nights bleed into days. The hours stretch before me one second at at a time, yet weeks drain away in the blink of an eye. What day, week, month is it? It’s all the same, each blurs into another behind drooping lids. I see the world in whitewashed colours, everything is tainted with motion blur as though my sight can’t keep up with the vibrancy and rapidity of everyday life. Always waking, never awake.
The days are tough, the nights are worse. I drift through my days like a ghost on autopilot. I am barely me. Watching from afar as my lethargic body lurches from one menial task to the next, I could be so much more, there are so many hours in the day, so much potential and opportunity. Days could be filled with life, words and love. Instead I crawl from one to the other, experiencing none and exhausted by all.
The ticking of the clock is my enemy. Blitzing away the daylight hours in a buzz of sensory overloads, before the setting of the sun slows time to a stand still. My mind like a rigour-mortised corpse in the harsh light of day, comes to life in the black of night. Resurrected by isolation and lack of stimulation, my thoughts build ominous towers and impassable mountains from the shadows cast upon my night time walls. By day silence overwhelms the noise, I fail to hear the words directed at me, the humming of street traffic, the roar of lives being lived. By night the silence screams at me. The ticking of the clock, the chirp of distant birds, the mutters of fictional conversations haunt me through the darkest hours.
Insomnia is a lonely affliction. While the world sleeps, you wander empty halls and occupy hollow spaces, banging frustrated fists against cavernous walls. While the world wakes, you walk like the living dead, neither there or un-there, drifting through crowded streets and claustrophobic halls as though you were possessed by another entity.
To wake while others drift and drift while others wake is a daylight nightmare.