Posted in Stuff No One Talks About

My Atypical Writing Sessions: How Insomnia Shapes My Writing

Dear Lovelies,

A quick look through the WordPress Reader reveals that I’m not the only one struggling to drift off to sleep. I’ve been up for the past three hours now, alternating between scrolling through Facebook on my phone and staring at my window to catch the first peaks of dawn. My body baffles me by constantly yawning but also rebelling by refusing to sleep; it’s a weird dichotomy.

Insomnia is one of those things that gets more annoying the longer you deal with it, but you also get desensitized to it, at least I do anyway. I think the worst time was the period earlier this month when I was awake for two days. I’m surprised I didn’t snap at anyone.

Regardless of its pain in the butt status, insomnia is good for at least one thing: writing. Most experienced writers give new writers the advice of writing daily; I do not. I’ve read that some writers attack when the sun comes up, while others prefer to write at night when kids and spouses slumber to ensure a distraction-free zone. Oh, if only it were that easy.

I write whenever my Muse hits; the fact that it correlates with my awful sleep schedule is merely coincidental. I think one of the reasons why insomnia helps the writing process is because of the creative ideas it produces. Only at 3 a.m would a thought like “if someone wrote a suicide note to God, how would He respond, if at all?” or “if writing and speaking English were banned in America, how screwed would society be?” pop up in my head. In short, insomnia makes me think outside the box.

So, the next time you’re up counting sheep and hoping for slumber, why not give writing a try? You’ll be surprised at what you can create.

Posted in Stuff No One Talks About

6 Reasons for Midnight Tears

I’m sitting on my bed, crying because all the floors in my parents’ house are tile, which is a problem because I want to sit and be as small as possible but I can’t because tile hurts differently than carpet.

I’m crying because this is the second, no, third anxiety attack I’ve had in a 24-hour period, I’ve been awake for 20 of those hours, and my body cannot relax.

I’m crying because I had a great, long interview with a marvelous company last week and I’m afraid of calling because I don’t want to annoy them. At the same time, I don’t want them to lose interest in me, and I don’t know the balance between these two concepts.

I’m crying because if I don’t hear back from them, that means they gave the job to someone else, and what’s worse, I’ll have no idea why, what I did right, or what I could improve on, which will only fuel my disastrous anxiety-depression cycle.

I’m crying because PTSD and anxiety held me hostage today, which is a terrible thing to admit, especially as a Christian, but there it is. I have no desire to sugarcoat truth and trade it for chewable lies.

I’m crying because I don’t know what the future holds and that is terrifying.

Posted in Stuff No One Talks About

Random Musings of an Insomniac

I should be asleep, because I have to open the store in 7 hours, but I’m not.

There’s a cat meowing outside my window and I can’t help but think of editing and the Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland. I wonder if he would make a tiny hat for the cat? I’d like to think he would.

I wonder if Edgar Allen Poe ever came across a stray cat? I bet he did. I bet he named it Raven. Raven’s a good name for a cat, stray or otherwise.

I want a writing desk with a raven on it, a small one in the top left corner, and a typewriter, one that goes whoosh! That would be the best kind.

I wonder if I have what it takes to write a great book, just one, before I die? One that means something to somebody, and is read over snuggled blankets and with cups of hot Chai tea? I hope so.

Posted in Stuff No One Talks About

Triple Threat: Dissociation, Anxiety, and Insomnia

Dear Lovelies,

As I write this, it is almost 6:00 in the morning and I have been awake now for three hours. This is my normal. I keep my phone next to me so I can play calming music or a thunderstorm on YouTube in hopes of falling back asleep. I keep snacks in my reusable bag to fight away the munchies and sometimes, I just end up staring at my dark ceiling for hours as my anxiety flips my brain over and over.

Last night, I had to work. It was a short shift but a weird one. In a lot of ways, it was normal. I helped customers, bagged groceries, and ignored the pain in my back, quads, and hamstrings. I was also, once again, hit with the reality that I can’t drive. I was outside collecting carts and a woman needed assistance. She asked me to bring her an electric scooter, so I ran inside and got one. She then asked me to back it in so she could have an easier transition from her car. That’s when the trouble started. I tried hard to do what she asked, but the neurons in my brain wouldn’t cooperate and I ended up accidentally hitting her car. After a thousand apologies, I ran inside and asked a coworker for help and he did what I couldn’t.

As I type this, I struggle to keep from crying from embarrassment and helplessness. When I was a high school freshman, my neurologist diagnosed me with cerebral palsy and basically told me I couldn’t drive because of the effect it had on my gross motor skills. I took her seriously, but I didn’t believe her. I was 14. I thought I was invincible because I had no need to drive then. Man, was I ever wrong. Now, at 25-almost-26, I should be independent. I should, by all means, be driving and not taking public transportation or waiting for my parents to pick me up from work. I know this neurological condition is a part of me, and something I have no control over, but I feel ostracized. Especially since this is an invisible condition, a mild case, and I “look normal” with no need for additional assistance to help me walk.

Additionally, something else weird happened later on. After I clocked out, and as I was waiting for my mom to come get me from work, I walked around the store trying to figure out what I wanted to eat for dinner. I couldn’t decide on anything and went outside. I was trying to get to the gas station nearby because I figured I could get something cheap to satisfy my hunger. Why I thought about going to the gas station when I had literally just left a grocery store is beyond me. That should have been my first sign that something was wrong. Even though I had music in my ears (Be More Chill musical to be precise. Broadway junkie!), I was not entirely there. Apparently, I ended up walking in the road, in the midst of grocery store traffic, completely unfazed and unaware of my actions. My coworker saw me and walked me back into the store.  I think I scared him. I’ve experienced dissociation before, and have lost countless hours, and even days, over the years because of it, but I’ve never experienced anything like what happened last night. That was scary. I could’ve gotten hurt or worse. I’m glad I didn’t. I’m glad he found me. What doesn’t make sense to me is that most of the time when I dissociate, there’s a trigger involved. There was none this time. Maybe that’s a mystery of the brain I’ll never solve. For now, rest is needed. It’s 6:27 now. I think I’m going to try to get some sleep, be more chill, just relax. Whenever I wake up today, I’ll ground myself using my senses and maybe a hot cup of chai tea. Remind myself that I’m still here.