I is for Insomnia

April 11, 2020 , In: Expat Mommy , With: No Comments

Oh how I wish to get back to the days when I would party hard, sleep harder, and wake up refreshed and ready to do it all again. The youth is wasted on the young. Sleep began to be a problem when I got pregnant, of course; all the peeing in the night and the unconvertible big body growing did not help. Queue birth and baby and add another three years of sleeplessness and midnight waking.

When our daughter was around 7 months old, she started sort of sleeping through the night but I did not. I would wake up several times with my heart pounding and not being able to breathe. The doctor told me I had panic attacks in my sleep but I did not believe this. After pestering her and after getting many tests done, they concluded I had severe sleep apnea. All the weight I had gained and was gaining did not help me breathe when I was sleeping.

It took me another two years and 20 extra kilos before I started to use my special breathing machine in the night to be able to sleep better. I waited too long and was morbidly obese at this point, severely depressed; 3 am wake ups were not weird anymore.

The more I age, the more special tools I need to have a good night’s sleep: a special sleeping pillow;another twofor in-between my legs and one to hug; a facemask to keep the light out; and earplugs to keep the noise at bay. I also had my Kindle to read before bed, and some lavender oil and midnight snacks. Recently, I added a special 7 kilo anxiety blanket to my repertoire. Let’s just say my husband hates to travel with me.

I go to bed early; my friends used to laugh about that. But when you don’t know what you will get in the night, you want to get some of the good stuff early on. Some nights I wake up at 3 am and can’t go back to sleep. I am so tired but my body refuses to rest. Somebody once told me that if you wake up at 3 am, your soul is trying to communicate with you. I want to tell my soul to fuck off till there’s actually light outside.

I go to the bathroom, read my book, wander around the house, read some more, and maybe fall back into a fitful sleep where nightmares chase me. I never feel rested. I wish to sleep like my husband who is dead to the world for 10 hours! I wake from any small noise, a shift in the air, my soul shaking me awake.

I curse my family members who sleep like babies: Charlie, our dog who just sleeps anywhere and my daughter who finally sleeps through the night. Days are so much better when sleep hugs your body. Nighttime scares me many times as it is dark, dreary, and most of all, useless when you are not sleeping.

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