Even though, “I’m tired” is just about the only phrase that leaves my mouth these days, I still can’t seem to lull myself into sleep at night. When I was young, sleeping was an easy occurrence. I’d simply fall into my covers and blankets, snuggled up with a stuffed animal or pillow, and fall into a sound sleep throughout the night. But now that I’m older I’ll lie stiffly in bed for hours before I doze off.
I’ve told people about my struggle with sleep before. Most of them tell me it’s probably because of my cell phone, or coffee, or tv, or video games. They’ll tell me things like, “don’t watch anything on your phone before bed” or “try reading something before you go to sleep”. But my problem doesn’t fall in line with screens or caffeinated drinks.
The reason I can’t sleep at night is because of my head.
If I don’t take medication that wears down my mind and forces me into a long awaited slumber I’ll lie in bed and think.
And thinking can be a dangerous thing.
Sometimes I’ll think about God. If God loves me, or hates me, or if God even exists in the first place. I’ll wonder what the beginning of time was like, if the Big Bang really happened or not, or if God just waved a magical hand and there were suddenly humans and dinosaurs and trees and water. Sometimes, I’ll think about death. I’ll worry my parents will die too soon and I’ll be left alone in a house too big, sobbing and wondering where all the days had gone. I think about the day my puppy will take his last breath, his big brown eyes staring up into my mine, his tail wagging and my last goodbye to the greatest friend I will ever know. I think about the day I will be forced out of this world and wonder I if I’ll be with friends or alone, happy or sad, at peace or restless. Sometimes I start to cry, thinking about leaving the world. I know if I left I’d miss the beauty of winter, when the first snow begins to fall and you can stick out your tongue and catch the falling crystals. Or the bliss of summer, when everything is awake and the sun’s rays dip down embracing you in warmth. I cry when I think about the day my sister will die. Reminiscing over the memories of playing with action figures and watching cartoons, they’ll memories I’ll always remember. I think about my friends, if they’ll be alright after we all part from high school. I wonder what kinds of people they’ll become. ‘Probably brilliant and kind hearted people’ I tell myself, too bad I’ll never know. I think about the future, college, new people, new places. I wonder if I’ll do alright by myself. I’ll no longer get to stay in my bedroom or sleep in the same bed. I’ll think about the end of high school, how I’m happy to get out but at the same time, sad to leave. I think about the past. The friends I use to have, dumb things we use to do, the memories I use to cherish more than anything else in the world.
I think about sleep. How good it would feel to slip into an unconscious state, but my mind keeps going and I keep thinking, and before I know it . . .
My alarm goes off.