As an insomniac, it's not uncommon for me to go to sleep at 10:30 and wake up at 1:00am or 3:00am and find myself unable to sleep. I'm typically too tired to read at those times, or to do any kind of work, but I can sit and watch infomercials sometimes.
I think I have this problem because when I was young I found myself most productive and creative between the hours of 1am and 3am. I'd do most of my writing then. Now, practical concerns prohibit me from writing at that time, but my unconscious says "fuck you" and wakes me up anyhow.
I've become better of late at getting back to sleep. I wake, look at my clock, and then manage to sleep until 4:40 or 5:00am, at which time I just get up for work. This morning, however, I slept all the way until my alarm at 6:00, which never happens. It fucked up my whole day. I felt rushed and sleepy. Here's how it happened:
I thought I awoke as usual at 1:00 am and looked at my clock, but actually it was part of a dream. In the dream I could tell I wasn't going to get back to sleep, so I got out of bed and got in the car and drove off to Gettysburg and thence to Fairfield PA. My maternal grandmother, dead nearly two decades, was at her house. I got in the back seat of her nasty old green Oldsmobile with the green sparkly plastic seats and she drove me into Gettysburg to buy vitamins. People were staring at her when we stopped at red lights because she was wearing that silly hair covering many hard-core Protestant women out in the PA sticks wear to church.
Then, somehow, I was in an episode of 30something, hanging with the cast. We were in Seattle, however, rather than the show's setting of Philly. I was impressed with Seattle, never having been there in real life. There were gigantic rocky formations with buildings on them which I knew would collapse in a heartbeat with the slightest seismic activity. And there were gorgeous old stone buildings with ornate sculptures and roses everywhere. Dream Seattle is an awful lot like Rome. I even thought "why do I live in Baltimore when I could live here?"
Then I woke up and looked at my clock but it was still in the dream. My clock in the dream read 4:30, and I was amazed at the dream I'd just had about Seattle, and decided to get out of bed. Immediately I was in a train station and exploring the back rooms there. I had a fascination with trains as a child, and this obsession came back and then my alarm went off for real and I was terribly confused because I thought I was already out of bed, and this confusion lasted all through the day today, with students shouting and throwing things and jumping on my neck, but unfortunately the alarm never went off.