When my phone rang in the middle of the night, I regarded the sound with equal parts relief and annoyance. I was awake. I hadn’t really slept yet.

Now well into Week Two of an dissatisfying sleep system (I try, I fail, I stay up too late, I wake up exhausted), I had been staring at the blank white wall to my left. There was no point in closing my eyes (as if that would do anything), and I was too tired to raise my sight line to regard the framed collages of rock art.

I almost thought to let the phone keep ringing itself into my voicemail. It was so far away, positioned beyond the foot of my bed so that I would have to get up in the morning and move my body in order to hit snooze for a five-minute respite. Besides, if anyone was actually calling me at this unknown hour, I would be treated to a drunk dial on the other end. What’s the point?

It felt good to know that at least someone else was awake. I wasn’t a solitary insomniac (even if I was probably the only sober one). But on the other hand…what if I had been asleep? What kind of selfish bastard would call to wake me up and rob me of the much-earned unconsciousness for which I had been wishing? Who was I going to have to kill?

As it continued to ring, as my annoyance grew, I finally sighed, heaved myself off the bed and snagged the phone from its spot.

It was my alarm. It was 7:17 a.m. I hadn’t really slept at all.

Not good

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