Friday, January 10, 2014

On insomnia

One of the major consequences of graduate school has been an inability to sleep through the night.  I shouldn't blame it all on academia, I suppose; my parents are first-class insomniacs, so it's probably just as much inherited as not. 

When I lie awake in the middle of the night, this is what I think about.  It's like Wheel of Fortune; you spin the wheel, and any one of these things might come up:

1. My dissertation.  So much to do, so little time, and the more I work on it the less I understand.

2. The job market.   Ayeeeeeeeeee!  It was a good year in my field; there were about ten jobs.  I know about ten people who were on the market this year for those ten jobs.  So you can imagine how that goes.

3. The crush of the moment, if there is one.  There isn't now, and hasn't been for a while (1. and 2. above are pretty all-consuming), although there is always Richard Armitage...

4. Or, less melodiously and more worryingly, ex-boyfriends.   I wonder if my romantic life had flowered, bolted, and run to seed at age 27 and if it's all been an exercise in futility since then.  Sometimes that prospect fills me with despair, and sometimes I simply feel relieved. I wonder how I spent so long -- and really, any amount of time is too long -- with men who saw me as a commodity, and I wonder if I took the man who saw me as a person for granted.

5. Sweet Zak.  I miss him every single day, and it is hard work to remind myself that I did not cause the suffering that preceded his death. 

6. My church.  Should I stay or should I go?

7. My friends: the old and dear friend who is trying to fight her way through the thorns of an abusive relationship; the friend who is living with a debilitating disease with extraordinary grace; and the friends who are holding their precious six month-old baby as her life slips away.  When the wheel stops here, I get up and pace the house.

8.  What I should blog about.  Sometimes I simply lie in bed composing beautiful blog posts... that I never actually write, which is partly why you, our dear reader(s), have been neglected for so long... although see also points 1 and 2 above.  Anyway, I figured that this time I might as well actually get up and write it all down. 

So there you go.  If you're ever awake at 2am and want somebody to talk to, give me a call.  I'll be up.

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