I didn’t sleep last night. It isn’t that I attempted to sleep but couldn’t bring myself to a restful state. I actually didn’t even crawl into bed. I had too much to do to get ready for a work trip, and needed to be dressed like a grown-up and on a plane at 5:30 a.m. It wasn’t an ideal situation, but it needed to be managed because I like having a paycheck.
I hoped I could sleep for a couple hours on the plane, but I was wired. I had a middle seat and there was a hot, young guy seated next to me. I opted to chat with him, rather than risk passing out and drooling on him. We ended up talking through the whole flight. It was a fun conversation, but in hindsight, I probably should have just gone for the drool. I live in Denver, after all; hot, young guys are everywhere.
Now it is 12:14 p.m. It has been 30 hours since I last slept.
I’m trying to finish something that’s due in a couple hours but I can hardly look at it. The numbers are running together on the screen as if they’re made of chocolate syrup. I don’t even know what those numbers mean, or what they taste like, or why they are not on ice cream.
When I don’t sleep, my awareness of light and sound intensifies until it is debilitating. I become a hypersensitive, jittery, anxious monster—a Hyperjitteranx, if you will.
Here is a list of things the Hyperjitteranx would like to eradicate today:
- Light bulbs
- Surfaces that reflect light
- Objects that emit light
- Computer screens
- Phone screens
- Anything with a reflective surface
- Fingerprints on my reading glasses
- Pant legs that rub together in a way I can hear as my coworkers walk down the hall
- Telephone ringers
- People who call my coworkers and cause their phones to ring
- Coworkers who check voicemail while on speakerphone
- People who speak within earshot of me
- Headphones that inexplicably stopped working when I got to the office. Or maybe they work but my ears are failing
- Not knowing whether my headphones are failing or my ears are damaged
- The feeling of realizing I just took the last of my personal Advil stash
- Walking down the hall for more Advil
- That pompous little Keurig machine and the pretentious little whooshy sound it makes to announce when it has finished brewing a cup, as if to say, “Et…. voila!”
- Text messages that make my phone vibrate
- People who send multiple text messages in rapid succession, making my phone vibrate multiple times in rapid succession
- 111-degree weather outside
- People who say 111-degree weather is bearable
- The salad I ate for lunch, which was not fried and did not have sugar
- Things that are not fried and have no sugar
- Things that are not caffeine
- Surfaces that are not beds
- Objects that are not pillows
- Eye contact