Dreaded Dreadful Insomnia

It’s 2:40 a.m. as I’m starting to write this blurb that I know not where it will go nor if I will even decide to publish it.

Easter Monday. At my workplace, we don’t get “Pâques off” — that is, we don’t get this day off. It was a weird day at work in that half our clients were at work as well but the other half wasn’t. But it was a weird day in other ways, too.

A colleague at work came out to me today. I would be lying if I said I was totally shocked. Several months ago, he made a reference to life in Montréal that set off the proverbial alarm bells. I wasn’t sure I had heard him correctly, plus given that he’s given to making flip comments and that he’s quite colourful in some of his figures of speech, I just let it slide. Meanwhile, although I never formally came out to him, I figured he was in the know. (He was.)

His confidence to me led me to one of my own to him: that I have never before felt so disconnected and inert, to the point that I’m seriously considering getting help. This sentiment, in fact, is why I cannot sleep tonight even though I have a big day ahead of me at work.

After much thought, deliberation and procrastination, I decided to let my mother in as well. For the longest time, I didn’t want to do it: she’s getting old and she shouldn’t have to worry about her 45-year-old baby boy. But, at the same time, not talking to her frankly seemed to make me feel worse — seemed to add weight on my shoulders, additional weight I couldn’t carry.

When I do fall asleep, I can sleep 8, 9, 10, even 11 hours. That’s one sign of something being awry. But there’s also the realization that, through inertia — literally not doing anything except my job and showering every morning when I get up — and neglect — not taking care of even the most basic things the ordinary people take care on a daily basis — I seem intent on taking a path of self-sabotage.

I know it’s both a over-simplification and a bit of self-aggrandizing, but the basic feeling is nontheless very real to me at this time: I feel like I have for so long tried to be there for others (not always successfully and sometimes, in hindsight, with questionable motives) that I haven’t the energy any longer to be there for myself. I know that only I can pull myself out, but at the same time, I have never felt so needing of others — friends, family — to simply speak and, yes, get a reality check (not to say a kick in the ass).

I figure hardly anyone reads this blog anymore, and that’s okay. Sad, because this was a fun place once upon a time, but okay. However, if there are still readers out there, there’s one thing I want to make perfectly clear: I am not — I repeat, NOT — entertaining any kind of fantasy about turning myself into a projectile from a bridge! (That’s a joke, by the way.) But I am thinking about doing whatever is necessary to seek help, and to preserve the many blessings life has granted me and that I can still very much recognize and appreciate. In other words, after speaking with my colleague at work and my mother today, I realize that I’ve made an important step towards recognizing the difference between a “phase” and something more significant.

This isn’t just a phase. And it’s something I need to deal with, without overtaxing friendships. I don’t want to turn all maudlin on people! But to borrow an overused phrase from the current election campaign, I need to create the “winning conditions” to emerge better on the other side of the hurdle I need to get across.

{2} Thoughts on “Dreaded Dreadful Insomnia

  1. I’m glad to read that you’ve reached out to your mother and some other people!

    Having had my own bouts of extended periods of … well, I don’t even know what to call it but it was quite dark.. I think one thing I always come back to is that as human, we’re fairly strong beings. We’re built to withstand excruciating pain, whether emotional or physical. Sometimes it becomes too much, but signs of that strength come back when we realize it’s okay to not shoulder it all and actually ask for help. You seem to have done that and it IS a big step.

    The blogging world is an odd one now. I still read your posts whenever they come up in my RSS feed. I can’t say I do much blogging these days, but I certainly clutter up Facebook as you know! That said, I really enjoy blog posts still. They convey so much more than a 140 character tweet or however much space Facebook allows for a status update.

    I wish you well and hope the coming days, weeks, and months bring more light into your life.

  2. Thank you so much for your comment, Julia. It’s much appreciated. And yeah, you’re right: part of the battle is to find the strength within to realize when it’s time to ask for help.

    I do enjoy Facebook, but no, it’s nothing like good ol’ blogging was in the early Naughts. People were putting out a lot of good stuff out there. It’s sad to think about how many people have seemingly fallen off the face of the planet when they stopped blogging…

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