Visions of Insomnia 

Amy Ault Kirk

© Copyright 1999 by Amy Ault Kirk

Photo of Amy.

This story is inspired by those long sleepless nights when the mind is on overdrive and our thoughts leap from one memory to the next, often bouncing from last week to last decade or earlier.

I look at the clock.

2:35 a.m.

In three and a half hours the alarm will be summoning me for another day at work. Why can't I sleep?

I flip my pillow over and find comfort in its coolness on my warm face. Its refreshment is fleeting though, and before I know it, I am again struggling to find a better position.

I close my eyes and try to unwind. Maybe if I let my mind wander, it will tire me into a drowsy oblivion.

I see galaxies of stars. I am gliding through the Milky Way, passing multicolored constellations. I am like a rocket ship, cutting through the darkness of the unknown, flying on a journey through space.

Space. The final frontier. Captain Kirk. He had the look of a leader. Handsome. Always in control. I didn't care a whole lot for Spock. Who was the female? Aurora? O'Hara? No, Uhura. Her name was Uhura. She was cool. Uhura. What a name.

O'Hara was Scarlett's name. Such a beautiful woman. Those green eyes. That porcelain skin. A shame that she never knew her heart. Not until it was too late anyway. She was a fool to let Rhett get away.

My red shoes. I forgot to pick them up from the shoe repair! I need to do that tomorrow because the party is this weekend. They'll look great with my dress. I hope I can still fit into that dress. I better try it on tomorrow just to make sure. If it's too tight, I'll just have to wear the black pantsuit.

When was the last time I wore that black pantsuit? Great Aunt Millie's funeral. I can't believe it's been almost a year already. It was freezing that day! The coldest October I can remember. I didn't have my coat with me. Uncle Harvey let me use his jacket.

I should invite Uncle Harvey over sometime. Maybe to dinner. A bachelor all his life. I wonder if it bothers him? Maybe he's enjoyed it. He can hunt whenever he wants and watch his ball games in peace. He always seems pretty happy.

I'm not married and I'm happy. I hope I get married some day. What if I don't? I will. Yeah, I'm sure I will. I don't believe those statistics. I'm sure I'll get married one day. Mom and Dad will be so excited.

Mom always hoped that I'd marry Jack. I wonder if Jack is married? He probably is. He was a nice guy. I should've treated him better. I was younger then. Very stupid. If I had known then what I know now. Yeah, I wish I had been nicer to Jack. He probably has a cute wife and a couple of kids. I bet he dotes on his wife. Probably comes home with flowers and brings her coffee in bed. Wish I had someone to bring me flowers and coffee in bed.

I should buy some hazelnut coffee the next time I'm at the store. I'm almost out of it. Maybe I'll go to the store on Webster Drive. It has a better produce section. Fresher fruits.

I hope Aunt Martha sends me some Florida grapefruit for Christmas. She sent some last year. It gets me through the winter. It's like sunlight on dreary winter mornings. I want to go back to Florida. A week was not enough. I'd love to feel the sand between my toes and smell the salty air of the beach. How many vacation days do I have left? I used one last month, seven last spring, or was it eight? I'll have to check at work tomorrow.

I don't want to go to work tomorrow. I'm so sick of that place! My workload is too much for one person. Mindy really gets on my nerves. She needs to mind her own business. And the way she flaunts her cleavage makes me sick! The other secretary was much nicer. Yeah, Stephanie was much better. I wish she hadn't moved away. We should have done something for her on her last day. Why didn't we? We should have bought a cake or at least a card. I wish I had thought of it. Stephanie probably hates us for not doing anything.

I hated a girl named Stephanie when I was in the third grade. She was such a bully. Always trying to take my potato chips at lunch. I know she's the one that broke my ceramic ballerina in art class. Our teacher said it must have cracked in the kiln but I didn't believe it. Still don't. I could tell by the way Stephanie laughed and the devious look in her eyes. My ballerina was reduced to one leg. An amputee on pointe. I cried during the entire walk home from school.

I can't believe Mom and Dad let me walk home from school by myself. I guess the world was a different place back then. We lived in a good neighborhood. I wonder what it looks like now. I haven't been back in years. No reason to go with Mom and Dad living in a different town now. Maybe I should take a drive to the old neighborhood some weekend.

I wish it was Friday. No, I wish it was Saturday. I don't want to go to work tomorrow. Maybe I should call in sick. Better not, there's a staff meeting first thing in the morning.

I bet everyone from the office is sleeping right now. I wonder if any of them sleep naked? The last time I had a date was four months ago. I don't miss Luke at all. I'm glad we broke up. He was way too dull.

I'm probably the only person on my street that is awake right now.

Okay, it's time to relax. I'll never get to sleep if I don't relax. What time is it anyway?

I roll over and look at the clock.

2:56 a.m.

Amy is married to an Army officer and they live in Killeen, Texas. A Florida native, she graduated from the University of North Florida with a business degree and is now pursuing writing as a hobby.

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