Last night I didn’t sleep at all.
Not even an hour.
Not even 5 minutes.
Well, maybe I dozed off for a couple of seconds around 4:30am, while navigating my way from Philadelphia to Boston after a cancelled flight.
I tried to remember the last time I stayed awake all night long.
And I couldn’t remember.
Even when my husband was dying and I was right next to him for hours, I would sleep for a few moments and then wake myself up startled.
Even that night I was not without any sleep.
Then I went further back in my life and I still could not find a night without sleep.
I could not find a night where I saw the sunrise, dressed with the clothes of the day before.
Surely I have travelled the globe so many times, there had to be a 24 hour day, but you would find me catching sleep on a window of a plane, on a bus, as a co-passenger in a car.
Last night the goal was not to fall asleep.
I had to stay awake and drive to Boston.
I propped myself up, had coffee and threw some water on my face.
I even sang along with the music on the radio.
My eyes stayed open for 24 hours.
And I didn’t break.
I am still awake, on my final flight to San Francisco writing to you.
Yes tired but inspired.
And you know what, I feel younger.
I know it is so silly to say this.
But so true.
I feel youthful.
I feel funnier.
I laughed harder.
I looked messier.
Messy with life.
I felt like the woman I was in my 20s, where I could have stayed up all night and it would not have been a big deal.
You might wonder why would I write about this.
I just wanted to tell you that youth can come back in the most unexpected ways.
When we realize we won’t break if we do something that physically pushes our limits.
When we get messy and do not worry about the way we look.
When we dare to be silly and funny, and laugh with our own jokes.
When we take an inconvenient situation and make it an adventure.
When we stop taking ourselves so seriously.
We get younger.
I made a promise to myself last night.
That once a month I will do something that will make me feel unbreakable.
One day I hope you will forget which chapter you are living, what time it is and whether you need to go to bed or not.
There will be no real time, no real end.
Just a continuous loop of living.
Maybe being on a high altitude overlooking the clouds without sleep makes this Message in a bottle a little unique, but:
And I would know that taking a chance to write about this, in the way I did was worth it.
Here’s to your youth.
And to your 24-hour experience!
With no sleep,
PS. Find this Message in a bottle here and tell me about your 24 hour day. I want to know when you felt younger.
Upcoming Speaking event at Camp Widow on July 11th in San Diego.
My interview with authors Tears and Tequila.