"Sleep... Oh! how I loathe those little slices of death."Author unknown
Commonly attributed, in different wordings, to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edgar Allan Poe, and Jules Verne.
Oh hi, readers. It's been almost a week since I last said anything here. It has been a long and unapologetic week. Sunday, Monday and Tuesday nights all owed me entire nights' sleep I'll never get back. Thursday stole two hours of my life and Friday - today - was quite the bitch.
I don't know if this anyone noticed this, or if it was just the cracks finally showing in the workings of my grey matter - but three days can easily melt into a single protracted, lumbering franken-day when they aren't sectioned neatly by sleep. By Wednesday, I still felt like I'm in still entrenched in Sunday's lethargy and my subconsciousness was obliviously complaining, "Hey, why the fuck am I slaving away on a weekend?" And I also realise that if you deprive your brain of its privilege to dream, it'll start turning real-life into a dream. Now, I have never stayed awake more than three days in a row, but these are envelopes begging to be pushed.
I read somewhere that it is possible to hack our own minds into surviving on only 2 to 3 hours of sleep daily, and I must admit that I see the allure of having such an ability. It's a form of polyphasic sleep pattern called the Uberman's sleep schedule, and it's basically training yourself to cut down on all the time spent in stage 1 to stage 4 non-REM sleep and to go straight into the mental reboot of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Ever watched a dreaming sleeper? Neither have I but if we did, we would be able to see his or her eyes move jerkily under the eyelids in REM sleep. By taking only 20 to 30-minutes nap every 6 hours (and weathering this torturous regime for up to ten days), it is theoretically possible to force your brain into going straight for REM sleep every time you nap.
The idea of having a lot more time awake is very, very attractive to me because my candle's been burning from both ends for some years now and to paraphrase Tolkien, there's not enough butter, or something very much like that. As a result of trying to balance my passions with being a final year medico, I now subsist on about four hours of sleep daily. I am in love with life, and is drunk from all her pleasure. There are so many books I want to read; so many films I want to see; so many good food I want to taste, digest and make into poop. I want to drive on the streets of Melaka in the dead of night with the company of my thoughts. I want to write a novel or ten. Being an atheist, I know that my time alive is finite. To me, every hour spent asleep is a waste of criminal magnitudes.
In other news, I also noticed that my irides look... ragged.
I'm going to start paying more attention to the irides of every patient I examine from now on to see if there are anyone else who have a pair like mine. I don't remember seeing any during my month-long Ophthalmology rotation last year though. Do you know that your irides are as distinctive as your fingerprint? And that their peculiar uniqueness is the bread on which the tech of iris recognition scans is buttered on? You see it sometimes in sci-fi or spy flicks, though it is admittedly a tad overshadowed by retinal scanning. I'm craving for buttered toasts now, for some reason. With real butter. No gentleman should abide by margarine.
I think it's safe to say that I'll be writing in this web journal every other day for the next month or so - and I have a lot to say. I'm in a bit of a breather spot in an otherwise inhumanly frenetic year now, and I certainly will be needing it to recuperate. Every fibre in my body feels as ragged as my irides, let me tell you.
k0k s3n w4i