What an Insomniac Doesn’t Tell You…

I like the world best by morning light…


The way it pushes into the room through every opening.

The way it fills up every space with an invitation to begin, now, while the canvas is blank and the page uncluttered.

I am an insomniac.  I have been for all my life, starting from the moment I was born.  I screamed through every night as a child, terrorized by my own thoughts — the regrettable dark underside of a vivid imagination.  

As an adult, I’ve learned to wear my sleeplessness with quiet tolerance.  To rub concealer over the dark circles and go smiling into the day.  Still, I often say that Insomnia is the loneliest small town in the world – Population 1 – and in that loneliness and silence comes a cacophony of thought, words, wonderings, memories, shadows, dark stains in the gray matter, neurons like flashbulbs, firing and firing into the dark.

And then the morning comes.

And the thoughts sort themselves back into boxes.

The lids of the boxes are closed.

The light spills in again.

Those first moments when I open my eyes and drink in the clear white sundazzle — those are the ones I treasure most.

I take a deep breath, and I begin.




  1. Beautifully written. You know, my favorite thing about the internet is that it increases the population of that lonely city from one to millions. Next time you’re awake and feeling all alone, know that I’m sitting on my couch, at 3am, feeling the exact same way. We can paint this town red, together.


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