Modern life is the art of standing up. Discovering ways in which our species, because it has learnt to stand on its hind legs alone, must learn to pay for it. And it accuses rabbits for being frisky. At least, that, is natural. There is nothing natural about not sleeping when you have to. Nowadays, urging people to meditate seems to be one of the mandatory policies of every company, institution and community known to man. It is alright if you clumsily cross your legs on your chair (when you could perfectly have the same results sitting normally) and try or pretend to find your deeper consciousness. It is so uncool and positively vicious to fall asleep. And if you are drowsy, why do you bother to include yourself in the great chain of human progress at all, you mewling quim?
I have never been a great sleeper. By great sleeper, I do not mean the Russian literary character Oblomov or the source of comical interlude in the ancient epic The Ramayana, Kumbhakarna. I wouldn’t even call the relatively less well-rested American fairytale hero, Rip Van Winkle as an example of sleeping to be emulated by us. I am talking about somebody who gets 6-9 hours of refreshing, dreamless, undisturbed and continuous sleep to awaken with a willingness to face the day with purpose and energy. However, for most of us, life is a constant, unreachable effort to accomplish the latter without the former. If you are, by this definition, a great sleeper, then please share your secret. You could help a lot of people like me with bloodshot eyes, vampiric complexions and a strange ability to dose off while standing in a train and yet, be fully awake before reaching the desired station.
Is this how we want to evolve as human beings? Is this how we want our genetic code to be modified so that it can be passed on to our kids? Fatigue is not a syndrome or even a disease. It has become acceptable, something you just live with, like air pollution. Everything seems to be geared towards it. The light through your electronic screen you are viewing at this moment as you read this blog post. Yes, we’re all conspiring against you. We will use any means necessary to cause a disconnect between you and your body clock. In the guise of a post about fatigue, where I, the writer, and you, the reader, commiserate on our fatigued, sleep-deprived state in this fine morn, noon or after, evening and night, we deprive ourselves of it further. Something like people who spend hours on the internet in forums and chat rooms discussing their internet addiction.
In fact, I am probably more afflicted than you are. I have felt so tired all day, I may as well not have blogged. But, because I am doing NaBloPoMo, and I’ve made it a promise to many of you (and I do hope you care for it), I could not have been able to face the shame of it had I taken a day off. After my recent blogging high, I feel responsible, for the first time, to people other than myself while writing here. It is flattering, but also added pressure. Though I keep telling you, broadly, to keep going after what you want in life and live passionately, I sometimes feel like a fraud for not practising what I preach. If I were someone else and saw through me, I would immediately close tab and move on.
Be kind to my mistakes and shortcomings, dear reader. I may, as well, blame the universe or myself for the tiredness I feel. It is some proportion of both, I am sure. But, the universe is not going to write my blog for me. I have to do it. Even as I dose off in front of my computer with my fingers still carrying on in this in-between state of sleep and waking, try and remember the other times I did write to you with great focus and enthusiasm, where you (and especially, me) would not have regretted the five minutes you spent on that particular post. Forgive me my trespasses for today, for I can provide no conclusive solutions to the above stated problem. I ask you to share your wisdom so that I may get my forty winks. Till then, “let me be weak, let me sleep. And dream of sheep.”