Sleepless nights. Been there, done that. Not the occasional, normal restlessness that everyone experiences from time to time. Rather, the relentlessly occurring sleepless nights that can go on for weeks, months and even years. Grief, anxiety and depression, among other things, all sought to live and grow at my expense. The circumstances surrounding these unwelcome emotions are personal and subjective, yet very real.
In my personal experience, if I am unable to sleep for any reason, whatever is bad or troublesome in my life is only going to get worse. The body needs sleep to survive. After watching the darkness get darker for years, I decided to try to fight; not because I had the strength to do so, but because I was very desperate.
From my perspective, this has been nothing less than a fight; no more sitting on the sidelines, waiting for “things to get better”. This fight required me to actively search for elusive answers. I had to ask many questions. I had to be willing to take advice from someone besides myself; sometimes accepting truths that I do not want to be true.
What happens if you don’t get the sleep your body needs? Below are some links to shine a light on that question.
I had to make many changes in every aspect of my life; not all at once, but moving forward, little by little every day. Don’t misunderstand, I have not “arrived”, and I do not have all the answers, I never will. Mostly, I still have many questions. But for the first time in decades, I feel hopeful. Yeah, I was very surprised.
In my experience, nothing happens overnight. This is my long journey that requires me to be as vigilant and possible. For any successes I’ve had, I’ve made mistakes, but I try to learn from them and keep going. In 2017, I started writing. The poem, “Sleepless Night”, was my first poem. It took many weeks of writing and rewriting for me to complete.
While writing this poem, I discovered that I enjoyed the process of writing; it was very consuming in a helpful way. I was able to name and confront an issue that had intimidated and ruled me for a long time. My life continues to include complications, aggravations and setbacks. However, I have not had the kind of sleepless nights I wrote about in quite a long time, and that’s fantastic.
Video below, Unions: Close My Eyes