The Grace Period of Sleep

Sleep is when my mind and soul conspire to course correct the rest of my being; an observable endeavor of homeostasis.

The mistakes of the previous day, week, month, year, and life don’t matter when my heart and body restore themselves during sleep. It seems the major thing that matters in sleep is balance.

Sleep is a grace period. It’s a time for the body to do what it’s meant to do, with little-to-no margin for interference from the active consciousness.

Sometimes, I wake up frequently throughout the night. Last night, I’d estimate I awoke five or six times before morning. This sounds annoying, but I welcomed it. I welcomed it, because each time I woke up I felt a little more sane than the last time. The interruptions to my sleep allowed me to gauge my own restorative process. Allowed me to observe how well my mind operates when I’m not futilely struggling to control it.

Last night was like a shower that washed away much of the grime, mediocrity, and self-judgment of yesterday. A smooth airplane flight through the night on automatic pilot.

Then morning comes, and the controls are back in my hands. Where will I fly today?

Well, I remember what was on my mind every time I woke up last night. It was all about building bridges between seemingly-disparate perspectives. About generating understanding for individuals and across cultures. It was about collaboration and synergy, about loving others unconditionally.

And that felt good.

So maybe that’s where I’ll fly today.

But what are the coordinates? How do I get there?

The coordinates are one conscious breath at a time.

And for me personally, it’s time to get back to the basics and work on my core. Not just my mean six pack, but my actual core. My mind-core.

Sometimes I get so lost in a sea of rhetoric that I forget how important it is to just be. I build these mental empires of logic, plans, and ambitions, and I often live completely within those instead of in a grounded daily presence.

The aspiration here isn’t to abandon rhetoric and become a mountain monk, though that thought has legitimately appealed to me before.

As with a multitude of things in life, it’s about balance.

Feet on the ground, readied to march towards plans and manifest dreams.

Like with Plato and Aristotle. Plato pointing to the heavens for answers and Aristotle being certain that all the answers are of the earth.

Who was right?

Both of them together, and neither by themselves.

With their powers combined, they’d have made a heck of a philosopher megazord, though.

(Someone please make that show.)

Anyway, I am thankful for sleep. Grateful that my body is wired for harmony and balance. Thankful for what I can learn from that in waking life.

Time to have a day. Hope yours is a groovy one.


Originally published at Andrew L. Hicks.