August 2nd, 2004 - Musings of a sleep-deprived man


Dear Journal,


I can't sleep, yet again. I do not know why my spirit will not rest these past weeks. Tonight though, I've taken my quill to bed and am writing from my agitated bed.  

What do I fear by sleep?  Is it the reason why my mind will not relent its hold on my body and be put to rest until the morrow.... if only I knew. I sigh. What more is there to do right now? Writing is one way to salvage my poor spirit of its invisible weights. If only I could just step into bed and leave them there at the foot just like some old slippers.  My sleep would be so much more improved.

It's been three weeks now I think that I have, yet again, had sleeping problems. My body will not relax at all, though I try music, potions, tea or any such relaxing techniques to soothe me. No, it will not do. Yet, my body feels like it's been run over by a dragon, twice!  Why can I not be one of those who hit the pillow and fall into deep slumber?!  Are those just unaware that life is cruel and cold? Is that why they can do so?  

Well, even if that were the answer, would I ever be remotely capable to not think about life's cruelty every night or so?  I doubt it.  It is as though I was ingrained with melancholy ever since I was born.  No catharsis for me my own birth was, rather a painful slow death!  Once you are born, the only thing left to do is die is it not? Saying that, I can hear Albus telling me off for such negative thoughts. Yet, it is true: giving life is giving death. It's inevitable. But do I seek it? Do we seek it, really?  I don't think so. As idiotic as we are, we do not seek it, ever. We want an end to our problems, nothing more. It just comes to humans to think death is an option to solving one's problems. And does it do the trick?  After seeing how the Dark Lord desperately tried to hold on to life, eternity,  I do not think death through suicide would solve everything. If such a dark soul wanted nothing more than live, why not others!  Indeed, all we want is the end of our suffering, taking back control over our lives. The Dark Lord has a peculiar view of this.  To end his suffering would be to have everyone else suffer instead of him. So egoistic, but can I blame him?  Yes, of course I can and always will. As lonely as I am, I am never to doubt everyone's right to dignity again.  That's the line one crosses or not: accepting human dignity as inherent to all human and conscious beings. I realised once it was too late that by refusing it to others was also refusing it to myself.  To extract the rights of some was to deny my own worth.  And so I saw the light and fought hard to atone...  

I fear and avoid all those who claim they hold the truth now. Illusionists, that's what they are. Dear Albus taught me that lesson... when he accepted me back. And ever since, he has prove true to what he told me then : " I don't hold the truth, Severus. And that is why I always give the benefice of the doubt, second chances and a chance at redemption. Always."  Dear old fool! And so he lets me teach and manage my House according to my will without so much interference. All because he does not want to hold the truth over my teaching style and such.  Darn man!  It brought about disasters at times, with Barty Crouch and Co. However, in the end, all seemed to sort itself out.  How would he know?  How come it does?  There were mistakes, but there were great accomplishments, too.  

Why then, in front of this evidence, can I not behold my sarcasms, my temper? If I should, like Albus, let the truth flow freely, without holding it or seeking it out like I so desperately do all the time in class or outside, what would happen?  Would I find peace at last?  Does it mean Albus has accepted some facts about life and he is now trying to live with it, without fighting it?  So many questions always left unanswered.  Yet, as far as I know, it does not mean Albus is never worried. On the contrary, the old man worries a lot.  What if his belief was wrong? What if holding out the truth to everyone was the key? Man, it must be just as crazy in his head as in mine. Except that he does not seem to have this underlying darkness as I.  Or maybe he does, but mine is deep-rooted and surfacing all the time while his is not.

At times, it feels like Albus is so brilliant, but at others, I don't know anymore. He has this "that's how the ball bounces" attitude about him... it perplexes me. He does not categorize, judges or rationalise like me.  He rather lets everyone be themselves.  Like if... he was tired or knew it was for naught. As if he knew we cannot change people's inherent nature, as if he saw their true struggling while all I can see are the facts. Yes, those cold facts in which I crawl helplessly all the time. Especially at night, like now.   How would Dumbledore write this, these questions?  He would have a totally different approach to it far from my analysing, calculating way.  He'd be far nearer to his sentiments than I would ever be. Is that why, ironically, he does not get angered easily?  I do not let emotions run too rampant within my logical thoughts and analysis. Things are ordered and all, but is that sane?  Does this forever dooms me to restless nights?  Am I fighting for a lost cause?   Does Albus know it is vain to fight and be angry about life and people, and that is why he tries to accept people as they are?  Even the Dark Lord whom he always called Tom?  Sounds like he always trusted that tiny part of humanity in Tom Riddle. Always.  And that brings me back to human dignity. A dignity no one can refuse another if one is human. Hence, we must all give it to everyone. Funny is it not that we should also do it for dictators!  Yet, to not allow dignity to them is to be like them.  What a strange world we live in!!

How long until I can find rest tonight?  Do I dare lie down yet again and try to find some tiny bits of peace within this nightmare I impose my soul each day?  My cat proves to have no problem falling asleep, confident I will not do any harm to him... I long for his trust in life. Is it trust? Instinct?  Even that, I cannot say.  All seem but mystery.  Why has nobody come out with answers from Heavens or whatever governs this universe!?  We humans should not hold the truth, but is there an entity who can?!  Why were we not born with that missing information?  Wouldn't it be simpler to know if there was a God or not, and if there were rules to follow which would lead us to happiness once and for all!!  Humans are judgmental and excessive, so maybe whomever is in charge did, but the information got distorted the second it reached human ears!  Things would be darn simpler like that!!  And I could find peace enough to sleep tonight. But no!  We are unsure of everything, we hold no truth and have to fear those who claim they do.  Yet, we so desire truth that we, in the end, seek truth.  What kind of vicious and insidious principle is that?!  Someone thought about this?  Surely even Heavens has a government because the facts and the theories do not match!  Just like governmental decisions and actions!!  What if those governing us, without our notice, are as screwed up as we are?!  I'd rather not dwell long on this issue. I might never close my eyes tonight, or should I say this morning.  

"Happy thoughts, happy thoughts" Albus says.  Hum...?  What should make me "happy"?!  Ha! The word sounds so ironic and venomous coming from my quill!  Yet, I should at least endeavour into something remotely acceptably nice if I'm ever to find rest today.  


Well, I'll listen to some music. It should lull me to sleep if I choose wisely.  And then I'll use a massage charm. I'm definitely glad I bought lots of those charms!  Expensive, but so delightful!  I hate to get out and expose myself to real magical-massage witches or wizards. The sole idea of having to perfectly be unguarded and at peace in an institution full of employees and customers is enough to make my ancestors recoil.  Dear God, no!  The only place I can truly relax is here, after I make sure my wards are placed upon any entrance of my chambers.  Which I do every night of course, after a long  day of stress and anger... the routine!  

Yes, I'll go back to    Scratch that. I am in bed!  I will only set this aside and try to sleep now lulled by a massaging charm and nice soft music.  Goodnight, I hope,


Good morning, dear Journal

Alas! In vain I have tried! The Moon holds over me too much power tonight. And unlike most of my students think, I do not prowl the corridors when in want of sleep so here I am, again, at your door. How can such an activity provide you with any rest, I ask you! No, I am way too well protected here to go off wandering the corridors at the un-godly hour. I only do before I set out to my quarters to retire for the night.  But why deprive everyone the pleasure of speculating over my nightly activities?!  

Corvus, my dear cat, is overbearingly tiresome tonight. He cries in want of a playmate.  I'm afraid I am not up to the task right now. My body, though the massage was good, is still so stiff from stress and fatigue... I will charm one of his playthings once again. Here. That should do the trick. At least one of us will enjoy his early morning!

I do not know what to write. My brain is all mushy.  I should do small idle talk then since that is what most people engage in with their almost permanently mushy brains.  Idle talk, eh?  For one, I started reading some literature once again. I had not indulged in such reading material for a long time I'm afraid.  I am trying different famous authors. However, at times, I find myself totally bored out of my skull by some pathetic stories or characters. So much that all I do is find a summary or essays about the book before I endeavour deeper in the story to see if it will come out to my taste after all. And if I still find the story  boring, then for my general knowledge's sake, I read the whole summary and get the main idea and themes out without having to suffer the whole thing. Lazy? I do not believe so. I only cast out unwanted ingredients which ruin the whole book and make out the main themes and morals nonetheless.  Well, elements which ruin the book from my perspective I mean. I already have to suffer my own pain and misery, I rarely indulge in others' for entertainment, unless I can find some catharsis calming effect to it.

No, my way is practical I would say. When the summary mentions an interesting part, then yes, I indulge that part of the book. Especially the philosophical, inner-emotional and cultural issues. Hence, I do know a lot of classic stories to which I can easily refer. I may not be a specialist in each minor events, but I can easily argue and opiniate as anyone having read the whole thing could. I do, after all, have great analysing skills! It makes up for what others' usual lack! (Good for you, Severus!  A bit of self-appreciation just as recommended by Doctor Dumbledore!, says my own sarcastic inner-voice)

When the plot is but explained, the magic of the words is all that holds a novel together is it not?  So why suffer the whole thing when I come across enough dunderheads in my life anyway! Of course, I am a rational who bears little patience for stupidity. Hence, once I come across too many pathetic situations or helpless characters, I am disgusted just as I am from my students. I will never press the extent to which the latter grate on my nerves so I am certainly not going to indulge in more Longbottoming in my spare times!  Oh no!!  

When, however, I find a character whom attracts me then I become an avid reader because I fear missing any lines from him or her.  Reading is a hobby after all, not a job to me. I find so little comfort and soothing in life after all...

My legs hurt so much. I stayed all day up, almost did not sit. I was in my lab making a new experiment all day of course. I barely stopped for lunch and dinner.  I should have known this would come.  Me and my inherent need for completion! Could not leave the thing lying there until the morrow.  I love making experiments over the summer when I am not traveling to some cities gathering more data from libraries and apothecaries. Hell! Now I have to take a numbing potion.  


Back and feeling much better!  Now if I could but sleep!  Maybe I will try it once again. Even my cat is sleeping darn it! Traitor!  Alright, enough of this. Good night. I shall turn and roll over in my bed until sleep does bless me with its appeasing presence!