You haven’t stayed up late in New York until you’ve seen the Empire State Building turn off its lights, and then in the same night watch the Chrysler Building do the same when the sunrise hits its spires. I don’t know why, but my insomnia has been really bad lately. It’s been three days in a row where that’s happened and my caffeine intake is barely below the legal limit. I’m not sure what it is, but my whole sleep schedule is just off. I get a few hours here and there, just at weird chunks of the day.
They say that nothing good happens after 2am. I don’t believe that 100%, but I think that anyone up after 2am willingly is either with someone they have feelings for, or are incredibly lonely, there’s nothing really inbetween. That’s the state I’ve been in the past few days. Those witching hours from 2am-6am have some sort of amplified meaning to them. It’s as if every feeling and every thought I have is magnified. The weight of your loneliness has more gravity, and it feels as if you’re trapped in some moment in time. It’d be easy to think that writing from that place is a goldmine, but it’s paralyzing. When you can’t articulate a feeling, when you can’t comprehend the magnitude of what you’re going through that you can’t put the words to it. I can’t tell you how long I’ve stared at the blinking cursor waiting for the narrative to come out, for something to explain my state of being.
For me, I learned to sit back and exhale. I put on a record, read a little, snack on something. I got to know the late night shift at the Duane Reade pretty well. Eventually, a drop or two falls from the faucet of thought, and from there I try to piece something together. Most of the time it’s crap, but every once in a while, I reread what I write and it’s a little painful. Painful not because I wrote anything hurtful, but because how starkly honest it is. A for some reason I can only get to that place of honesty when I’m in that state of solitude and melancholy. I don’t publish those pieces at times, because while I like to be open, I don’t know if I can share that much of myself with everyone at once. I don’t even know if I can share that much of me with someone other than myself, and that’s a terrifying proposition. I think that every single person has a public life, a private life, and a secret one. I don’t know if I want a secret life, maybe just a secret that one other person knows.