Sometimes I fall asleep with a pencil in my hand and a journal by my side because my deepest thoughts come at 3 am, in the moments before I drift out of consciousness. I call this pre-dreaming. When your eyelids droop and your mind is foggy with exhaustion, there's something mysterious about the potential to be found in the dark of the night. When most have gone to sleep, tucked into cozy covers in the safety of their home, I stare at the moon and the twinkle of each star. In the eerie silence of the night, I have an existential crisis and allow the thoughts I normally push aside to marathon through my mind.
How and when will I die? Where would I be, if not here? What's my biggest regret and how can I avoid that mistake again? What does my future hold?
Not only do I feel like a philosopher, but I become a philosopher. I used to be adamant about my sleeping schedule. In bed by 10 pm and awake by 6 am, I developed a constant routine. However, college changes you in many ways; one of them being sleep. I have come to the realization that my strongest friendships, my favorite memories, and my unforgettable conversations take place after the sun sets and the sky fades black. There's something so raw about 3 am conversations. Sharing your vulnerable, honest secrets with the world lit by moonlight. In a sky freckled with millions of stars I realize how insignificant my miniscule problems are. How there are greater things to worry about than my astronomy mid-term or whether I worked out today. Look at the entire universe set before your eyes and focus on the bigger picture in life, the more important things, and the people that truly matter. You are capable of wondrous things and destined for the impossible, if you only believe in your mind that you are competent.
I often catch myself dreaming more than I sleep. With my eyes wide open I imagine my future; of all the great things I have planned for my life and the places I'll go. Pre-dreaming my life away before the actual dreams overwhelm me. I have an obsession with finding the line between reality and unconsciousness, when you can't tell whether you're asleep or not especially because of exhaustion. A lover of the stars and an accidental insomniac I sometimes simply forget to sleep. At 3 AM I glance at the clock and wonder where the time has gone. Perhaps it's an awful habit I've subconsciously gotten myself used to, or perhaps it's not a problem at all, but a gift of isolated solitude. The early hours of the morning can be lonely, but with the illuminous glow of street lights and passing cars, I sit by myself talking to the moon, and sharing the momentary secrets of previously short-lived days. Though I wouldn't recommend regularly divulging in this odd practice, because sleep is moderately important to a healthy life, I do suggest the occasional rebellious outbreak of going against the status quo and staying up late to participate in new adventures. The implicit promise of experience is enough to daily jeopardize any sleep habit.