I’m starting a new life today. In my new life, when I wake up at 4 in the morning, I get out of bed, drink a cup of warm soy milk and write down the words that elude me the rest of the hours of the day.
I’ve been fighting this new life with its 4am wakeup time for weeks now. I am a person who must have at least eight hours of sleep each night. Otherwise, I chug through my day cranky, sore and brittle with despair.
It was never uncommon for me to wake every couple of hours, after my ravenous brain blew through its nightly dose of Ambien. In my previous life, I covered my eyes, packed a pillow tight against each ear and let my groggy morning-mind sink back into sleep.
But these past four weeks, I drug myself to sleep at 11pm (like I have for years) but at four am, red hot liquid iron shoots me clear of my warm ocean of sleep. Upon impact with the conscious world I am instantly solidified and left to bob on the surface, like debris, waiting for the time, usually a couple of hours, that I can dissolve back into the dreamy underworld.
My days changed too. I’m fairly certain the balance has been tipped by a change in hormones, right on schedule for a 52 year old woman. The medication that so effectively mitigated my exhaustion, these past eight years, now has me simmering with anxiety. Wellbutrin, captain of the good ship “Fight or Flee”, can no longer be trusted to fuel my adventures.
We’ll see what Celexa and her cloud of wispy angels can do to quell the mutiny of my neurons.
But here, in the wee hours, a few days into the battle, I am doing something I have been incapable of for weeks. I am sitting at my computer, writing. Soon (it’s nearly 6am) I’ll go back to bed. And we’ll see how this new routine plays out.