I am so tired I can’t remember whether or not I’ve blogged about my insomnia–a condition, my fellow night rovers know, made more tolerable by sending a missive out into the void.
In my case, the pattern of staying up most of the night and turning in at dawn, has been with me for some forty years and across those years, I’ve done many things to get it to go away. But it remains, and works on my energies and mood.
I read recently that losing lots of sleep leads to a cornucopia of mortal outcomes–heart attack, arthritis, etc etc. But in some fundamental sense to speak of it is to gain a bit of control over it–in the sense that naming generates truth and a measure of truth–self-honesty especially–is a measure of power.
No mystery here, awake and chronically over-tired because of being pulled in many directions– at any given moment to engage with my writing and painting and cooking– and then there is the delicious distraction of time with my husband, when we curl up together with coffee icecream and a movie and slumber from early evening until eleven or twelve. He goes off to bed, being blessed with a functioning body clock; I stay up and plunge head-first into doing rather than being, ignoring my body’s pleas to me to stay in the nest of down, in a darkened room..
Nothing is as frustrating as crawling into bed at 4 or 5 or 6 a.m. wondering if you’ll be able to drop off. Thinking of it all is antithetical to its happening–this pure and natural event that sustains us–to rest, to let go.
Because of my exhaustion and that it’s taking so long to address my various health issues and work up my courage to get my leg, (which has curved into something called “windswept deformity,”) worked on, to build up the necessary trust– what I want so badly to do–to make it to AWP in Mpls this spring, to fly to Manhattan where Katherine Rosen says she would love to take me to a performance at the Met– or to Sicily to meet up with the Italian poetessas I have the great good fortune to interact with nearly every day–all of that, out of the question.
And so, I try to focus on what I can do, rather than what I can’t. Despite my grueling sleep disorder, I have made and sold seven dolls since October, and I have new poems, one of which will be in a beautiful and brilliant new publication soon, by invitation! I have watched some fifteen movies in as many days and made love twice and subsequently, a banana cream pie for our Xmas dinner– cause and effect. Sweetness– light–even in the fog of exhaustion. A blessed holiday to all. xj