Sunday, February 10, 2013

The quiet hours of insomnia.



After a glorious three week stretch of sleeping well, it seems my sleeping troubles are back to haunt me.

I know, in my head, that this is an inherited condition.  That my dad struggles with it (almost every night), as his father did before him.  (And who knows beyond there?)  Still, I'd kind of like to know the REASON for this insomnia-- Is it emotional? (I am a worrier.) Is it trauma-related?  (We did have a nighttime home invasion.)  Is it Restless Leg Syndrome? (I am fidgety.)  Is it Sleep Apnea?  (I am a snorer.)  It could be any of these things.  Or a combination of them.  And if I lived in the states, they'd send me for a sleep study where they would watch me sleep (or try to sleep) and diagnose the root cause.  But I don't live in a place with access to medical care like that, and we still don't have health insurance, so until such a time arrives where those two align, I will just keep on treating symptoms as much as I can and try to stay sane during the sleepy days.  

But pathology aside, it's been very recently that I have wondered if my more-recent insomnia is somehow related to something entirely different altogether. Could it be a gift? Here I am, awake at 1AM (after sleeping quite soundly from 9PM-11PM).  I could have fallen asleep at 5:30pm, for I was exhausted, but that presents some logistical problems for a family of 18 if the matriarch is asleep before dinner.  So 9PM it was.  And I slept solid for two hours.  And then I awoke.

Since then, I have had two hours of silence.  Not total silence.  I mean, I hear the crickets chirping, the fan whirring, and some very faint voudou drums off in the distance.  But still.  There is no one talking.  Or yelling.  Or whining.  Or tattling.  Or fighting.  Or complaining.  Or banging things around.  Or making noise-making of any other sort.  Some of them might be snoring (like Wildarne for example... she's a snorer), but I can't hear them from here.  My house is CRAZY noisy during the day.  CRAZY noisy.  But here at night, it's not.

And so I am left in my living room, splayed out in the coolness of the evening on my even cooler tile floor reading, writing, thinking, praying.  I lit a candle (because there is an AWFUL stench coming from outside... but that's another story for another day).  The candle is burning silently and peacefully.  My eyes get mesmerized by the dancing flame and my stress levels descend as I breathe deep for the first time in I-don't-know-how-long.

Not being able to sleep when I think I should be is so frustrating at times.  It makes our really full days seem unbearable at times.  But not tonight.  Tonight it feels like this awake time is a special gift of quiet for my hurried, frazzled, rushed, much-too-noisy soul.

Thankful.