Saturday 21 May 2011: Five things at five
1. I am awake and it's nine minutes past five in the morning.
2. I remember reading an interview with someone - I can't remember her name but she was a female artist in her 70's or 80s - who talked about lying in bed, unable to sleep. She said how interested she was in where her thoughts took her, the journey they went on and where she might end up. I think about that a lot on mornings like this, I think about shifting the way I think about this, changing my thoughts from the negative, fearful and panicky drivers of insomnia into something creative and purposeful. Something enjoyable.
3.Earlier this year I tried mediation for the first time. Physically it had an odd effect on me - literally folding in on myself - which I didn't really enjoy. While I tried to move into a different state all I could hear was noise. The volume got turned up on all the noise as soon as I sat still. I did enjoy the idea of acknowledging thoughts; greeting them before sending them on their way. I'm probably not going to go much further with formal meditation for now but trying to help change my thinking is an idea that I like.
4. Because what I hear is normally the increasingly loud whir of worry. What I hear at five in the morning is the dawning realisations of things gone wrong; the errors and the things not done that go round and round and round. I know now that my brain takes a few hours to settle and then, when it's ready, a voice nudges me awake and asks me all the things I haven't thought of yet. And because it's late that voice is allowed to be loud and like all loud voices,it's good to remind myself that it's not always right.
5. But this morning everything is quiet. The street I live on is empty and bright. There's time to think. Time to listen.