It's not unusual for me to be awake at odd hours of the night.
My mind is almost always constantly moving from idea to concept to words that might need to written down at some point, to things I wish I'd remembered during the day. This non-stop buzzing most often wakes me up multiple times during the night, not stopping until the alarm alerts me that I should probably begin preparing for my day job.
I like to consider New Years Eve the habitual insomniac's favorite holiday. We weren't going to sleep anyway (or, we were going to wake up again), so what better an excuse to remain awake until midnight to ring in the New Year.
This year, as always, I will spend the minutes just preceding midnight summarizing this year, and trying to visualize where I would like to be next year. I will likely focus on the very things that kept me awake all night this year, and those things I hope to change in the New Year.
I will think about the subtle feeling that something wasn't right with the apartment we had just moved into, and my excitement that I had been invited to test for a promotion.
I will remember the day I took the test, walking out of the testing feeling like I had passed, even if barely, and driving home while taking a phone call that no one wants to receive. I will recall arriving home, sitting my daughter down, and telling her that one of her friends had passed away. For once, I had to step away from my little "I can handle everything by myself" island, and enlist some additional support for my daughter while she was going through all of this.
I will never forget holding her through the funeral of her four year old friend for the rest of my life.
As the clock ticks down, I will remember the frantic scrambling of feet above my head, running upstairs to find both of my children curled up in chairs, trying to stay away from the mice they had just seen in the apartment. I will also remember them taking up baseball bats and covering what room openings they could, moving furniture to try and draw the mice out in order to kill the mice themselves.
I will think of my happiness to find that my son had been accepted into Job Corps, followed by my mixed feelings when the call came for him to report to San Diego so quickly. A small get together with friends, old and new, prayer, a family dinner, then he was on his way.
A fast move, wherein my daughter and I hauled only what could fit into my car to a small storage, then found a way to live only on things that could only fit in my car in one trip.
It's been one hell of a year.
There is the thought that everything changes at midnight on New Year's Eve. All of the trials and troubles of the past year fade away, and a clean slate is granted to start fresh with the new year. I think we all like to believe that, especially when the past year has been a particularly hard one. Any year that feels like one long night, with only a promise of the day to come, has all that live through it only too happy to see it come to an end.
But like most insomniacs will tell you, dawn eventually comes. Slowly, but steadily, light will begin to peek through the gaps of blinds and shutters. The minutes will dwindle to seconds, and this long, dark night of 2015 will end.
I, and so many others, are absolutely ready for morning. Welcome, 2016.