The hours after midnight are my favourite. When the lampposts turn off simultaneously with people’s kitchens and living rooms, but never bathrooms. The world around me is asleep, and this is when I am most awake. Time slows down and speeds up. There is no pressure to do anything between the hours of midnight and 4am, it’s just me, looking out on the world through my bedroom window. Both fearless and terrified.
Sometimes I put my head out my bedroom window as far as I can and look down, just for the hell of it. I like to think and I don’t like to think about how this is my life and my home, and other people have got their own lives and their own homes. Or how they might not do. They have their own thoughts, and opinions, and hobbies, and repressed memories, and goals, and achievements, and fears. I’m fearless because nothing is stopping me from jumping out my window except the doubt in my mind reminding me of what would happen if I did. Night air cleanses my lungs and my worries and it eases me. I’m terrified because it reminds me amidst all the chaos that is a human life that there is a universe out there that doesn’t care. We don’t need to care about any of the crazy domestic worries that we have created for ourselves, we’re just specs in the universe, and none of what we have created matters. So what’s the point?
And I’m here, on this Earth, drinking in everything that I see whether I like it or not. When bad things happen I remind myself that they’re not real and when good things happen I remind myself that I’m not alone in the universe that is so not real that it somehow is real. I tell myself that all the good things in the universe, the things that separate me from reality, are real. I don’t know why I stay up until past midnight to think about these things. I think about them in the daytime too, but, surprisingly, they’re just a lot more coherent thoughts in the night – maybe it’s because I get time to think about it since the world has been put on hold. But I probably shouldn’t be staying up until silly hours because I used to do this for a good few years and it was pretty difficult to eventually go to sleep at 10 and wake up at 8. Old habits die hard, right?
Maybe I’m just going a bit mad, especially at night. But that’s okay, it’s both thrilling and scary. But maybe that’s life.