Can ya turn up the TV, the people in India can’t hear it!

I have a neighbor.

My neighbor has a TV.

He likes to play his TV loudly.

He likes also to play his TV a lot.

He especially likes to play his TV late at night into the wee hours. One, 2, 3 o’clock and beyond.

I know. I’m up hearing it. And losing sleep because of it.

My roommate neighbor — I keep calling him that for it’s like a roommate just outside your door — lives in the next building. Only a narrow walkway separates and this building and it.

His apartment is directly across from mine. Also, as “luck” has it, he’s the sole tenant with the locking metal screen door. That, you guessed it, directly faces and opens into my bedroom window.

So any sound emanating from his apartment squarely enters my bedroom — in addition to the entire studio as well as those of surrounding tenants.

That’s the setup. As I was saying, the roommate neighbor likes to play the TV loudly often and every night into late late late. He’s not viewing subdued educational documentaries on Tchaikovsky. He’s watching dramas and action shows. No James Lipton sitting in a studio quietly interviewing famous characters here!

He likes to watch TV with his door open. Understandable, the days are still pretty toasty and the nights not yet cold.

Either the man lives in a cave in his mind or is too thick, unaware, inconsiderate or self-absorbed or some combination thereof to be aware that there are others around him and in close proximity. Or perhaps he’s aware but doesn’t care. Either way, the result is the same.

Loud TV. All night long. Every night. Past 3 in the morning.

I wish I could say that closing the windows seals out the noise. It doesn’t. They’re single-pane windows in an old building. At best, with windows closed and thick blackout curtains drawn, the sounds are muffled. Picture cotton stuffed in the ears.

There’s no point in telling me to close the windows. The TV still enters. Moreover, day temps heat up the apartment and it faces south — nice in wintertime! — and I have no fan or cross ventilation. In addition to fresh air, opened windows in evenings bring relief to an apartment that by design is hot and stuffy.

For reasons I won’t publicize, I’m not saying anything to the roommate neighbor or the manager of the neighboring building.

I’m trying to live with it. I’ll be honest. I am struggling.

I am struggling in part because this recent sleep deprivation caused by the loud TV is part of a bigger picture. My sleep, such as it isn’t, has been fucked up and lacking since 2012. Actually it’s been messed up since childhood; however, it’s been acutely and chronically fucked up since 2012.

Rather than a source of restoration, renewal and rejuvenation and dreamtime that it’s designed to be by Mother Nature and Spirit, it’s been quite the opposite. I will leave it at that.

Now, prayer is not something that comes easily or naturally to me. Having any sort of relationship — correction, any sort of positive relationship — with a higher presence, be it God or Spirit or Divine Intelligence or Universe or Higher Power or Light, whatever word you give to that which created all and is the source of all — is a challenge and hard work for me. It’s part of my lifetime’s work.

I’m at wit’s end. I’m also past exhausted, a cumulative effect from these years of sleep deprivation exacerbated by the current situation. I’ve hit bottom. I can take no more of the intrusiveness / intrusions.

I am, I should add, a very considerate neighbor / roommate. I keep the volume of sounds (TV, music, phone conversations) waaaay down. I use headphones, even in the day, so as not to bother anyone. I’m petrified by others’ irrational outbursts. Been there too much too often. If I could make myself entirely invisible, I would. As it goes, I make myself as invisible as possible and still my presence is an annoyance to someone … someones mad, someones crazy … and it is always I who suffers the consequences, not them.

You could say I’ve “mastered” the art of walking on both eggshells and the edge of a blade, beginning in childhood.


It’s neither easy nor natural for me. It is work. Work unfamiliar and work necessary.

In this state — a cumulative beyond-exhaustion + at wit’s end + in pressingly severe need of sleep restorative and consistent and sleep, period + nearing a tearful sobbing breakdown + wanting help, wanting relief and needing support — I find first myself empty-handed for a solution.

Meaning: I can’t make the roommate neighbor be considerate or aware or a better neighbor or anything else. I can’t make him turn down the TV or use headphones.

Prayer. I have to reach out. I have to turn this over to a higher power (God, Spirit, Divine Intelligence, Universe, Light, All That Is …).

I have to ask and be shown the way through this mess — for a mess it is. A genuine messy ugly convoluted complex toxic mess it is.

And that’s what I’m going to do.

I’m not going to pray for the roommate neighbor to quit the TV or his addiction to it or to lower the volume out of consideration for others or to wear headphones. I’m not going to pray for a specified outcome.

Instead, I’m going to pray for the way through for me, the current me and the inner child who has never known anything other than warfare and destruction and pain and fleeing the home to if not find peace, then at the very least a place of minimal safety and escape from war and its brutality.

I’m going to ask every day and every hour and moments within the hour if necessary to be shown the way through these intrusions from the outside that constantly put bullet holes through the flayed fabric of my life.

I’m going to pray — in the way of a novice learning prayer — to be shown / taught a path to inner peace. Because with God as my witness I cannot change one damn thing about this fucking world or the people who make it so rotten. Can’t change a damn thing. Can only learn to live in it, through it and despite it.

So that’s my plan and commitment, put on cyberspace paper for all to seed {all = non-earthly beings, consciousness}.

I want to move through this; the cost, not only to my present life but future, is too high if I don’t.

So, I’m not entirely sure yet how to articulate it; the prayer goes something like:

Spirit, help me move through this burden, this lifetime of intrusiveness, violence, dictates and hurt from others. Help me let go of all the burden and the harm from others. Help me to forgive them. Help me to heal myself and the child who’s in so much pain and was abandoned. Help me move through this and find the inner path to peace. Thank you.

it’s my start …


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