Monday, 3 September 2012

In the Still of the Night

I'm sure it must drive my wife crazy, it even drives me crazy sometimes, but I don't sleep. At least I don't sleep at night when most normal people seek their beds. Working nights for most of my adult life has taken its toll on my body clock. I have tried to change it. I've spoken to doctors and taken sleeping tablets, I've read self help guides, I've tried herbal remedies, over the counter medicines and old wives tales but to no avail. Nothing seems to work, I'm a night owl and it seems there is nothing I can do about it. It's not a situation I'm particularly happy with but, despite the inconvenience  of running on a different timetable to everyone else I know, it has its plus points.

I do drag myself out of bed during daylight hours, I try to function in the 9-5 world (OK, maybe noon-5 is more accurate) but it is when dusk creeps up that I come alive. That is when I truly start to function. As others are winding down my brain kicks up a gear. As others drink their cocoa I feel an excitement stir. As others slumber, I go to work.

I do my best work at night. The cool, dark hours are when I get my best ideas. I find my inspiration in the moon and the stars, I hear whispered suggestions in the silence, I see wonders in the shadows. It is at night that my creativity knows no bounds. In daylight I question and doubt, but at night I find a confidence, my true self, and I give it flight. Nothing is impossible, nothing too challenging, nothing beyond my reach. Maybe it is because of this that I find it so hard to sleep. My mind is too busy dreaming to actually dream.

The day for me is for the mundane, the errands, the chores, the practical necessities of life but as the sun sets, as the light dims, as the still of the night descends the world comes alive with possibilities and imaginings, a creative light goes on and in the still shadows, I work. And then when dawn comes calling, when bird song fills the sky and the daylight world begins to stir, I seek my bed. My wife smiles sleepily and indulgently as I wake her with my ideas, my sketches, my wild plans, and all content at a good night's work, sleep overtakes me.

So spare a thought for a sleeping druid as you drink your morning coffee. I may look lazy to those who don't know but I just put in a 16 hour day night.



  1. I've been reading and really enjoying your posts so much; there's a wonderfully contagious sense of coziness that I sorely need!

    I long for the day when I can follow my natural rhythm as you do, most inspiring.