(The Attention-Deficit-Hyperactivity-Disordered Insmoniac -- from here on out referred to as ADHD-I --went to bed at 10:30 and fell fast asleep. She’s not sure exactly what it was that woke her up, heart pounding at 12:30, because all she remembers dreaming about is a dog with a red bandanna playing with a soccer ball, but she’s been awake, fretting about work and other life issues ever since. Ages ago, she slipped away into the guest bedroom, so her husband wouldn't be bothered by her restlessness.)
What time is it? 2:00 a.m.? Already? S**t! I’ve got to get some sleep. Come on, sleep…Okay, not a good idea to think about sleep. Don’t think about sleep. Visualize. Take a deep breath. Count sheep. There’s a big fat sheep happily jumping over a fence. Looks like something that could outsmart Wile E. Coyote. One. One big fat sheep. Two. Two big fat sheep. Three…four…five…six. Did I remember to turn the laundry room light off before coming to bed? What about the deck light? Yeah, I think I did. Stop it. Focus on the sheep. Here comes another one. What is that six? Seven? Seven, I guess. Eight. Nine… Oh f**k! Who am I kidding? The only way I’m going to conjure up a sheep right now is if one comes through the ceiling and lands on top of me. I’d like to strangle the idiot who came up with the notion that counting sheep is a way to get to sleep.
(ADHD-I throws off the covers, because it’s too hot. She tosses and turns for a few minutes. She flips upside down with her head at the foot of the bed – that used to work when she was a kid and couldn’t sleep. She lies there for who knows how long. Feels like sleep is just on the horizon. Her back starts itching. Her legs start itching. No amount of scratching seems to help. It’s a deep-down, way-below-the-surface-of-the-skin sort of itch).
Damn! What’s the matter with me? Why am I so itchy? What’s that a symptom of? AIDS? The Ebola virus? I can’t remember. Ought to get up and look it up online. No. I am not going online. I’m going to sleep. I have to sleep.
(ADHD-I now starts to get cold. She flips back around and gets back under the covers. She lies there for what seems like a very long time, but is only five minutes.) That’s better. I can just feel my eyelids getting droopy. Look into them. Look into the darkness of them. Pretend you’re in a dark tunnel. Don’t think about anything. Remember that time in first grade when you got in trouble for talking, and Ralph was the one who was talking? That was so unfair. And don’t forget that time in junior high when nobody would let you sit with them on the school bus. And then there was the time you tripped on the stairs in high school…God.
What time is it now? 3:00!? Okay, if I get to sleep within the next ten minutes, I can skip breakfast, get up at 6:30, and that will still be a little over three hours, plus the two I got earlier, which means I'll be getting really close to six hours of sleep. Six hours of sleep isn't bad. Lots of people only get six hours of sleep a night. Hell, lots of people seem to thrive on only four hours of sleep a night. They brag about it. Wish I were one of them. If I were, I wouldn't brag. Oh, s**t, I forgot to give Lisa her book back last time I was in the office. Uh-oh, did I leave that book at the office? What did I do with it? I hope I didn’t lose it. Dammit, I’m hungry. I’m going to ignore that growling stomach. If I were asleep, it wouldn’t be bothering me. (Stomach growls a few more times.) Wait a minute. I think I read that hunger keeps you awake. Cheese and milk have that stuff in them that makes you sleepy. Better go get some cheese and milk.
(ADHD-I makes her way downstairs to the kitchen to get some cheese and milk, making sure not to look out any windows on the way, lest she sees some scary-looking face looking back in at her. She cuts herself a chunk of cheese and pours a glass of milk, spots a Cooking Light magazine on the kitchen table and takes it back up to bed with her anything-but-light, wee-hours-of-the-morning snack. She props herself up in bed, eats, drinks, and reads recipes until she’s sure she can’t keep her eyes open any longer. The magazine is slipping from her hand. She turns off the light and curls up under the covers. She’s beginning to dream. Suddenly, there’s an unidentified thump from downstairs.)
What was that?! (Heart pounding again, she sits up in bed and listens.) Is it someone in the house? If someone’s in the house, do I have time to slip into the closet and hide? No, wait a minute. The closet was a terrible hiding place in Halloween. I wonder if I’d hurt myself if I jumped off the second-floor deck? Is that someone coming up the stairs? (Listens intently, but all she hears is the sound of the morning newspaper being delivered.)
S**t! The paper’s already being delivered. I’m never going to sleep now. I’ve got an hour at best. Should I just get up? Nah. Might as well just lie here and make the best of it. Lying still is almost as good as sleeping according to that one article...
(Twenty minutes before the alarm goes off, she slips into a near-comatose state.)