June 17th, 1982. That was the last night I ever slept. You might be thinking that I only sleep during the day or that I’m exaggerating; but the truth is exactly how it sounds. I went to bed that night, slept like everyone else in the history of forever, and woke up. And I haven’t been back to sleep again since then. At first, I just thought I was strung out or nervous about something going on and that’s why I went a few days without feeling tired. But eventually days turned into a week and then two weeks. I went to the doctor and got examined, but he didn’t find anything wrong with me. He didn’t believe me when I said that I hadn’t been asleep for two weeks at the time, but did prescribe me sleeping pills. I shouldn’t have taken those.
Why shouldn’t I have? Well, see, they didn’t really work the way they are supposed to. I remember taking two and not feeling anything, so I took four more on that first night of trying them out. I did not notice feeling tired at all, even after taking the pills. I stopped feeling tired in general, but just knew that it wasn’t normal to not sleep. So there I was, laying down in bed and hoping for the medicine to kick in. My mind was never affected by them, but my body was. I was lucky not to choke to death while my body was paralyzed numb. My eyes stayed open the entire night and it was by far the longest eight or so odd hours I’ve ever experienced.
I eventually regained control of my body and swore to never try medication again, but instead tried all sorts of different holistic practices to try and cure my lack of sleep. I even went so far as allowing a Native American tribe to conduct a ritual on me in hopes of regaining my ability to sleep, but to no avail. Every doctor that I saw over the years thought that I was just mentally unstable when I told them that I hadn’t slept in years and said that I’d be dead after a few weeks of no sleep. They also disagreed with me when I told them that I’d been awake for decades and hadn’t died yet. Apparently it’s scientifically impossible, but here I am.
Do you know what the worst part about never sleeping is? You never get a break from your life or yourself. Imagine spending 24 hours a day, every day, for your entire life with your thoughts. You’ll take for granted the time that you get to “be away” from yourself and sleep. If I haven’t gone completely mad from lack of sleep, I’ll surely blame it on the fact that I’m just…tired. Not tired in the sense of wanting to sleep but exhausted of life and my own mind. I can’t put it on hold and I couldn’t think of any worse nightmare than the one I’ve been living through all these years awake.