You have to get up.
That’s the first thing. Don’t just lie there and let it have its way with you. The sea of anxiety loves a horizontal human; it pours over your toes and surges up you like a tide. Is your partner lying next to you, dense with sleep, offensively unconscious? That’s not helping either. So verticalize yourself. Leave the bed. Leave its maddening mammal warmth. Out you go, clammy-footed, into the midnight spaces. The couch. The kitchen.
So now you’re up. You’ve reclaimed a little dignity, a little agency. You’re shaken, though. You make yourself a piece of toast; it pops up like a gravestone. Insomnia is no joke. The thoughts it produces are entirely and droningly humorless. Failure, guilt, your money, your body. Someone else’s body. On and on. And over there, look, the world: the whole flawed and shuddering and horribly lit life-and-deathscape, with all of us shambling around the circuit like broken beetles. At 2:41 a.m., everyone who’s awake turns into Hiëronymus Bosch.
And therein, my sleepless friend, lies the key: You’re not alone. Even as you twist in these private coils, these very particular difficulties, you are joining a mystical fellowship of insomniacs. We are all out there, keeping an eye on things: a sodality, a siblinghood, an immense and floating guild of piercingly conscious minds. What might happen, if not for our vigilance? Into what idiocies of optimism and vainglory might humanity collapse? We’re like the Night’s Watch in Game of Thrones, except there are millions of us. Above the city rooftops it shimmers and flexes; it tingles over the leafy suburbs: the neural lattice of our wakefulness.