Sleeping Through School

Last night, for the third night in a row, I couldn’t fall asleep. I laid there, staring at the wall or mindlessly rereading favorite books, until five a.m., when I finally drifted off.

It’s frightening to not be able to sleep. The hours drag on, and you’re tangled in the bed sheets, hoping that you’ll be able to get enough shut eye to function the next day. The later it gets, the more the fear and anxiety worsen until all you can do is calculate how long it will be until you have to get up.

At one, I finished the first book. At four, I finished the next. And at five, just when the sun was turning the corners of the sky pink, I drifted off. The whole night I had been focused on getting into school today, drilling the idea deep into my mind. I was not going to lose today. I just wasn’t. Graduation is soon, and I can’t leave if I don’t finish my classes. I will not repeat my senior year. I’m way too smart for that.

My mom woke me up at seven. I was tired and alert all at once, and somehow managed to heave myself out of bed and down to the kitchen for breakfast. When I got into the library at school, I immediately put my head down on the table and dozed off. The same thing happened in second period and during the end of forth. At lunch, I went to the nurse’s office to sleep. Sixth period, I put my head down and hoped that I’d absorb math through osmosis. I stayed alert during French, and by the time I got to therapy at two thirty, I was quite delirious.

It’s terribly frightening to be unable to stay awake in school. I can be conked out with my head on someone else’s desk in the middle of a loud debate or cabinet meeting. I can sleep through someone balancing things on the back of my head. You can even write on me, and I won’t notice. I miss so much. Social interactions slide by without participation. I miss out on learning the lessons. I look like an idiot who is totally uninterested in school. But most of all, it just scares me to have so much happening and not to be aware of any of it. I’m entirely lost to the world.

Maybe tonight and tomorrow will be better. Maybe they won’t. But the fear and anxiety of sleeping in school refuses to dissipate, and I can only wish that it will motivate my body to act as it should. I will not stand for today’s behavior.

So here’s to my afternoon nap and going to bed early with the hopes of being alert tomorrow.

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