My Nightly System Shutdown May Surprise You

Last night around this time, I was having a difficult time getting myself to go to bed. Some would call it insomnia. Its in these wee-hours after midnight when most people have already taken themselves to their beds to cuddle up in their covers, amongst their pillows and are soundly dreaming sweet dreams.

Whilst their pillows and dreams are flickering behind closed eyelids whilst my own are EXPLODING with ideas, energy and imagination!

It’s been this way my ENTIRE life.

Early on in life I tried a variety of tactics to cope and compromise with this late night surge of energy. I tried wearing myself out by lifting weights at night, or hitting the dance clubs until 2am, or chasing the stars late at night with a telephoto lens and camera. Nothing worked.

Many people have always been SUPER curious about how I can manage these late nights awake then catch a handful of hours of sleep. Spring up at seven-thirty in the morning and be in the office by eight-thirty spry and ready for the workday.

It’s an unsolvable mystery in my life.

Some would call it a conundrum and others would simply be mystified.

Actually, I have this theory about why it doesn’t affect me and that is because many moons ago when I was trapped in the womb, my mother gave birth, twenty-two minutes after midnight! I was born in the wee-hours of the morning. And I have the hospital bracelet to prove it!

During these long stretches of multiple nights staying up until 1:22am, 2:35am or 3:55am its because my body becomes accustomed to these sprints of being awake into these wee-hours of the morning. Its the most peaceful time of the day for myself.

I admire the peacefulness and stillness in the night. There are less lights on and I can read, write, or strum up life-strategies.

A few nights ago, I was struggling to get into the bedroom, and after editing a post-draft, I headed out into our family room. In this room away from the computer, I figured I would grow tired and head off to bed. I was wrong.

Instead I began scribbling in a journal, drawing in a sketchbook, pulled out my Celestron 7×50 Binoculars to look at the Gibbons-Moon. Eventually the clock behind me SCREAMED at me to go to bed. But I just wasn’t having it. Those zzz’s would have to wait until my brain shutdown.

Knowing it was time to get myself to bed I scanned the bookshelf before me. Reading one title after another until my eyes fixated on a blue spine, with white scrolling letters. NIV Holy Bible. Internally I giggled the well worn spine sagging in the glow of the fire.

Are you seriously going to read the Bible? I said out loud to the other books. Shaking my head I began reading through the titles: Soul Surfer, One Minute Millionaire, Alchemist, Louise Penny Beautiful Mystery, Your Meter is Low, Buddha and The Short Economist.

Damn It! That’s not going to work!

There I was reading titles off the bookshelf sitting on our carpeted floor than I spun my head around to stare across the open floor concept at the microwave’s green digital clock. My eyes blinked as my mind finally caught up to the time: 3:23am.

Fuck.! How are you going to get yourself to bed?

And that’s when I spotted it.

Moving up and over my fingers tugged at the abused dark blue spine than pulled o it gently removing it from the shelf. Without looking at its index I simply flipped it open and looked down at the Far Right Column. Where I began to read.

Psalm 57e

For the director of music. To the tune of “Do Not Destroy” of David. A miktam.b When he had fled from Saul into the cave.

  • 1 Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me,
    • for in you I take refuge.
    • I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings
      • until the disaster has passed.
  • 2 I cry out to God Most High,
    • to God, who vindicates me.
  • 3 He sends from heaven and saves me,
    • rebuking those who hotly pursue
      • me —f
  • God sends forth his love and his
    • faithfulness.
  • 4 I am in the midst of lions;
    • I am forced to dwell among ravenous
      • beasts —
  • 5 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
    • let your glory be over all the earth.
  • 6 They spread a net for my feet —
    • I was bowed down in distress.
  • They dug a pit in my path —
    • but they have fallen into it themselves.
  • 7 My heart, O God, is steadfast,
    • my heart is steadfast;
    • I will sing and make music.
  • 8 Awake, my soul!
    • Awake, my harp and lyre!
    • I will awaken the dawn.
  • 9 I will praise you, Lord, among the nations;
    • I will sing of you among the peoples.
  • 10 For great is your love, reaching to the heavens;
    • your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
  • 11 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
    • let your glory be over the earth.
  • e In Hebrew texts 57:1-11 is numbered 57:2-12
  • b Title: Probably a literary or musical term
  • Holy Bible, New International Version (NIV) (c) 2011 Page 397, PSALMS 55-57 by Biblica Inc.

Towards the end of verse 11 my brain could not compute the words which were being collected by my eyes. Those damn eyelids kept fluttering as my subconscious continued to pry at the back of my neck tugging my being into the unconscious sub-worlds of sleep. Or in my case a nap. After all, my alarm was set for 6:55am. Without another word. I dogged eared page 397. I wandered over to the fireplace switch and pushed it in. Then over to the floor lamp spinning its dial to off. With the lights out I stooped picking up the Note9 smartphone and headed for the bathroom to finalize my day with the daily automatic brushing of teeth before eyes met pillows and the system shutdown for good.