Feeble Knees

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Sleepless Knees

Last night I was up until about 2:30 in the morning, my mind was refusing to let me off the hook. I had to get up and write down everything I was planning to do today. It was if the cerebellum took over and said "that's it; you're accomplishing something worthwhile tomorrow if I have to keep you awake all night until you agree to it."

Whenever I lie awake sleepless, which thankfully isn't as often as it used to be, I think of how my former pastor used to pray for backsliders and unsaved loved ones of church members. He used to pray that the Holy Spirit would wake them in the middle of the night and basically give them insomnia until they repented. "Let no sleep come to their eyes!" he'd bellow.

Being a terrible insomniac myself, and frequently sleep-deprived due to work (and church) demands, this absolutely horrified me. How many times had I personally almost driven off the road and met my Maker because of sleeplessness? I began to be a little paranoid that my sleeplessness was due to some deep hidden sin, that my Pastor was the calling down the demons of insomnia on my poor addled head. Tucked in his office he must have a Christian voodoo doll in my likeness, stuck full of pins through the brain. Go without sleep long enough, suddenly anything seems like a plausible explanation.

I sleep much better now than I did then, but I've moved to a quieter street. There are no "independent businessmen" selling their uh, wares out in the darkened parking lot behind my building and having guests upstairs at four in the morning. There are no ambulances and firetrucks rushing by every forty minutes on the nose. I am not sleeping with a pool cue next to my bed, in case I need to bludgeon an intruder. Mr. F. is here to keep me safe and secure. I've left behind my crazy high-pressure job in high tech. Things are much different, and sleep comes much easier these days.

But there are still nights like last night where it eludes me. I pick up a book and try to read myself to sleep. I drink warm milk. I try to clear my thoughts by writing lists. And I remember my Pastor, and wonder if he's up, praying for me?

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