It's almost 4am as I write this. I haven't slept yet tonight, despite my best efforts, and as dawn approaches, it's looking less likely that I will. I've had insomnia for years, and a few times a week, I get to watch the sun rise through the wheat fields to the east. I'm not worried about anything, I'm not trying to keep track of mental to-do lists, and I haven't had nightmares. I'm just...awake. Like, really, fully awake.To say I'm a night owl is a serious understatement. I can't remember the last time I fell asleep before 1:30 or so, and many nights, it's more like 2:30 or 3. At least once a week, I'm awake to see the sunrise. Well-meaning friends have given me all sorts of remedies over the years: "Take some Tylenol PM!" (that will knock me out, but I'll feel groggy for days) "Drink some tea!" (Yep) "Read a book!" (Yep) "Take some melatonin!" (Doesn't work) "Eye mask / earplugs / yoga / cigarettes / white noise machine!". Still awake.
Here's the thing, though. I'll let you in on a little secret: I kind of like it. I'm not sure my insomnia needs curing. Strangely, I am my most alert, energetic, and productive between about 9 pm -3 am. I focus better, bust out album designs and blog posts in half the time, and have intense spurts of creativity. I like the rich, deep colors, the quiet. To make things weirder, whenever I have a long streak of not sleeping, I'll find out later that my little sister has been awake those same nights, too - even when she's thousands of miles away. We joke that it's the full moon keeping us up.
To me, some music just sounds like it belongs to the night. Here are a few of my late-night favorites:
When I'm Small by Phantogram [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28tZ-S1LFok&w=640&h=360]
Stars by The Xx [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mHAuOibP-k&w=640&h=360]
Bloodstream by Stateless [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CBY9OU1I9Q&w=640&h=360] So now if you're awake for no reason, you have some excellent music to listen to.
Sidenote: At 4am, I got really excited, thinking I had invented the word "awesomnia". Turns out I didn't, but it's still a sweet word.