Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Sleeping through my insomnia

I suffer from periodic bouts of insomnia. These periods come and go and last a week or so at a time. After a few nights of crappy sleep, I tend to get a bit crabby. And on edge. Last week was one of those weeks. It was also the week of my Son's first birthday. I needed sleep and nothing seemed to work. Sunday, my mom had given me the last of her highly-coveted Ambien, one of which I took Sunday night. It worked marvelously and I woke up Monday morning refreshed and well-rested. What a difference a good night sleep makes!

Monday night I decided to forego the Ambien, especially since I only have one left and will hoard it and save it for a desperately sleepless night. I was sufficiently tired and by 10 p.m. my eyelids were feeling heavy. I put my book away, turned off the light and snuggled down into my covers for what was sure to be a deep and dreamless sleep.

I easily fell into a deep sleep. Dreamless? Not so much. I had a dreadful nightmare. The kind that scares the living shit right out of you and makes you want to hide completely under your covers for the imagined protection they provide. Around midnight, I heard Rob sneak into bed. I was awake enough to know Rob was in the room, but I just couldn't wake up. It was as though my upper and lower lashes were powerful magnets that the weak muscles of my eyelids could not wrench apart. If I stopped trying to fight the sleep, I would slip right back into my nightmare. So I kept fighting it. I concentrated hard and willed my eyes to open. At one point I felt as though I finally succeeded, but I saw only dense blackness and I knew that I had not won. My left brain was fighting my right. Logic vs. Fantasy. The left wanted to awaken to my safe bedroom with the familiar furniture and warm husband, while the right wanted to delve deeper into the frightening nightmare.

For what seemed like forever, but was probably only minutes, I fought to wake up. I finally woke and frantically scooted closer to Rob. I looked around at the things in my room which were bathed in the soft light of the hall nightlight. I took a few deep breaths and told myself it was just a dream. It was ok to go back to sleep now. That's it, relax. Settle into rhythmic breathing. Sleeeeeeep. Hm. It's hot in here. Move back over to my side. Ugh, my arm is falling asleep, turn over to the other side. Tomorrow is laundry day, I have to get that done. Sam is out of diaper rash cream; I better pick some up at the store.

On and on it went.


At least I got a few hours.


Anonymous said...

I had a sleepless night last night. For no good reason. There I was, 1am, still tossing and turning. Finally I fall asleep, and am awake at 4. Just lying there. Hoping I'd get back to sleep.

Normally that doesn't happen. Normally I enjoy it cause I get to lie there and think for awhile, something I don't normally get a chance to do. But, in this case, this morning, I am tired.