Well... its only been ten days, and I've had a tiny bit of sleep nearly every night. Nothing like the weeks and months of the past...
But I can feel it coming... the cracks are opening in my fragile walls of sanity!
At this stage of sleeplessness I can still function fairly well. Somehow I give myself permission to achieve less, so the days can feel quite successful. Paintings can be richer, as losing my grip on reality allows the stories in my head more freedom. I do what I need to feel comfortable, eating and drinking without any sense of guilt or care. I am more protective of my emotional state, and apologise less for having needs.
Measurement of time loses relevance, and time is linear rather than cyclical. I *like* this.
Though not one I'd choose, its a way of learning to be less harsh on and more forgiving towards myself, almost a holiday for expectations. I am the opposite of physically refreshed, but this constant state of awareness does allow a kind of self-renewal.
None of the above, however, cushions a 6.45am start to organise a cooking kit for eldest daughter...
I *love* my creative, erratic, full life, and the people who share it with me. I could give in to the desperation that sneaks alongside sleeplessness, and it may come to that; but I've found that the best route is to just go with it. It is a part of me, for better or worse; and there's a lot you can dream in 24 hours that can't be discovered in just 16.
Here's my latest painting, of a weather-beaten hawthorn. Saw so many of these on my trip to last week to Devon. Lone and unlikely, beautifully shaped by their own resilience to their environment, but growing with the wind; never against it.