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Sleep deprivation was, allegedly, one of the tactics employed to torture detainees at Guantanamo Bay. To get them to squeal. We can do one bad night. But three or four medium-bad nights of sleep in a row begin to eat us alive. A worm, called Not Enough Sleep, is slithering round in my brain, nibbling bits of it away. The edges of my mental capacity are blurred. My eyes sting. My body is heavy. And I am on edge. I cry easily, I honk my horn at clueless drivers, snap at my children. Each day arrives and I’m unsure what its contents will be. Emily Dickinson said, “in dreams becomes reality”, and indeed, dreamtime and daylight time have fused. The day is one long night.

The only thing that makes me feel better is dear, sweet bedtime. When I crawl in to bed with my screen. She comforts me, she coos at me. I fight to keep my eyes open and on on her. She’s so understanding in the deep of night.


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