Julie Lyles Carr: The Pursuit of Sleepiness

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Pursuit of Sleepiness

Well, hello 3:31 am.

We meet yet again.

How many times has it been this week?

I must say, as a suitor you are relentless.

Despite my deepest protests, you seem determined to coax me out of sleep to watch your number appear in blue digital display on the bedroom clock.

I've come to appreciate your non-yielding persistence, the way you scoff at my attempts to wave you away with chamomile tea, melatonin, hot baths and the like. Even now, even as you have pulled me from dreams and to the warmth of my computer, I dine on deli turkey in a feeble belief that tryptophan will chase you off and leave me to slumber.

It is true that you and I spent many a pre-dawn dance together as I nursed a newborn or checked on a toddler with an earache. And then there were those times that I saw you as I stayed up far too late, unable to put down a compelling book.

But I wouldn't want you to think that I was leading you on.

It's just that I've matured now. And I really need my sleep. It's not that I have something against you, 3:31 am. It's just that I don't feel the need to see your numbers click through the watches of the night. I'm content to know that you've been around. But it doesn't mean that we have to see each other every day.

I suppose there are a couple of caveats I have the right to ask for if you are going to persist in waking me every night. First, you should bring with you a wave of creativity. Yes, that's right, creativity. Some amazing juice of genius that I can partake of in the wee hours. Some million dollar idea that I can incubate and develop, since I'm up anyway. Oh, and you should also bring a jolt of energy, some magic essence that allows me to function at full capacity regardless of the hour. And you should also bring some antidote for the sugar cravings that always seem to accompany your arrival.

We really need to talk, 3:31 am.

We're going to have to figure out a compromise that works for both of us.

Right now, it feels like you have all the power in the relationship. And I really need some sleep. Unless you have come bearing some million dollar idea....

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