About An Hour Ago

Insomnia2I barely remember the journey to work, although my colleagues later told me that I must have driven myself there under my own steam. I don’t remember getting out of the car or sitting on the stairs and crying my eyes out, but I must have done.

Somehow I ended up back at home with no recollection of how I’d gotten there. I was alone in my cold and dark flat, alone and with no one but my own shadow to keep me company, sobbing my eyes out yet not even knowing why.

I was tired, so very tired that even sleep escaped me. Night after night I lay on my bed in the dark, praying that sleep would take me in its gentle embrace and carry me away to a place where my mind could rest.

Just a few hours of rest. Was that too much to ask for?

Nights turned into weeks, until insomnia became my newest traveling companion. It didn’t matter where I went, insomnia would follow me like a hunting dog on the scent of a rabbit.

Insomnia stuck to me like mud on my shoes and no matter how much I tried to shake and shrug him off, still he clung to me, sinking his claws into my mind and refusing to let go.

Lying in bed in the dark of night, exhaustion brings a strange sort of madness with it. Have you ever felt so tired that you cannot sleep?

When your body and mind crave for a rest that is impossible to achieve, your brain begins to play subtle tricks on you. Paranoia begins to take hold, fighting insomnia and exhaustion for dominance in your wearied body, pulling you in different directions until you feel as if you’re being torn apart.

You question what people say to you, convinced that they’re looking down on you, judging you, mocking you behind your back. You hear noises, even when there is nothing but you and the aching silence of the dead of night. Shadows on walls begin to move, convincing you that you are not alone in your tortured solitude.

During your waking hours, sleep taunts you, convincing you that you’ll be able to rest, if only you’d lay your weary body down for a moment. Lured by the chance of quelling the disquiet within you do as sleep commands, only to find that it was a trick, a lie.

The day is not made for sleeping. Reality taunts you, mocking you for believing that you’ll ever find peace. The day is made for living, but your nights are not made for sleeping either. Your nights are made for you reliving every mistake you’ve ever made, every person you’ve ever hurt and every promise you ever broke.

There is no escape. This is your reality.

About an hour ago, I took matters into my own hands. Waiting for the narcotics to take effect, I pray that, tonight, I can rest.

Written in response to Thain in Vain’s Week 50 prompt: About an hour ago.






Filed under Flash Fiction 52 Challenge

11 responses to “About An Hour Ago

  1. Pingback: Flash Fiction Challenge – Week 50 Submissions | Thain in Vain

  2. A stark and accurate look at insomnia. You caught the exhaustion, the mental confusion it can cause, and so much more extremely well! Great job!

  3. What a haunting piece of writing. I could feel the protagonist’s exhaustion.

  4. Oh my gosh Heather. I know this feeling all too well. You painted a clear picture here girl.
    “still he clung to me, sinking his claws into my mind and refusing to let go.”
    –I suffered this kind of insomnia for years. Now I take black box meds. Argh.
    Hope you had a lovely Christmas, Heather.
    🙂 ❤

    • I’m so glad that this piece touched you, Staci. Insomnia is not a condition that I would wish on anyone. I find it cruelly ironic that you become so tired that you simply cannot sleep.

      I had a very enjoyable Christmas thank you, I hope you and your family did too ❤

      • Tell me about it. Ironic indeed. I would be exhausted and still unable to sleep. I finally gave in and went to the doctor when I wasn’t falling asleep until 6:00 am the next morning.

        We had a nice Christmas, thank you.
        🙂 ❤

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