Monday, July 27, 2009

Wide Awake

It's 3:40 and I have been wide awake since 1:00am. I am (sort of) trying out the sleep/wake system some indigenous people in the world use: If I am awake and cannot sleep, get up, do something relaxing and go to be when I am tired again. I say "sort of", because I did lay in bed for 2 1/2 hours fruitlessly trying to get back to sleep.

I do not understand why I cannot sleep when I take so much medication, some of which, 1000 mg of Tegretol (a mood stabilizer) and 300 mg Trazadone (an older, sleep inducing antidepressant), is meant to help me sleep.

They do help me get to sleep. Within 1/ hr of taking it I can barely stay awake. These medications also, sometimes, seem to help me stay asleep, but like my shapeshifting (read:cycling) mood, there effect seems random.

Dr. X. has spoken with me about my alcohol usage. He's never judging, or paternalistic, but it is clear he is attempting to sway my beliefs, that alcohol helps me, away from the "darkside. He says alcohol may lower anxiety initially, but that there is a rebound effect, a withdrawal of sorts, later on. So if I drink to much I will initially fall asleep, but when the alcohol wears of I will be wide awake. It makes sense. Often I experience exactly this effect, but not always; which makes it difficult for me to think this may be the problem sometimes.

The trouble now, and often when I have these random sleepless nights, is I have not been drinking more than one drink (measured as 1 1/2 oz. vodka, or a small glass of wine, or a bottle of cider) a night all week. I am still not sleeping.

I also have wondered if my insomnia is mood associated. On some level it is. When my mood gets too high I sleep much less. I often sleep much less (at night) when I am depressed though too, due to ruminations, worries, anxiety etc. When depressed I usually sleep more in the daytime due to perhaps the daytime sleep affects my nightime sleep, but again this is not consistently the case. Not being able to sleep is so frustrating.

Now I am feeling sleepy again, so I think I will pop back to bed. Sweet dreams everyone.


Harriet said...

Insomnia is awful. I hate those nights when my mind is full of twirling thoughts, like a hamster on a wheel. I hope you sleep.

xthedestroyer said...

I'm sorry to hear about your insomnia. 'Tis a terrible thing indeed, but you seem to be stabilizing of late. That is a pretty darn good thing in my opinion. As I have said before, just keep the support system you have in mind and let that be your guide through the dark valleys of life. Also, alcohol is a depressant and it will throw off the chemical balance within the brai, so overuse isn't a good thing. Trust me, I am struggling with it of late myself. But all that aside, its excellent to see you calmer and a bit more upbeat. Made me smile today to realize that you might be getting better in a sense. Take care and whenever things get dark, remember we're here and we care very much....

fromthesamesky said...

Oh yuk, how horrible - it is awful when sleep is so elusive, and everything always feels ten times worse when tired. I've been feeling similarly recently (I've started taking sleeping tablets for the first time ever - those nights when you have to break from them are horrendous).

Is it possible you've become too 'used' to your medication and your body has adapted?

Aqua said...

I am trying really hard to not get worked up over not sleeping. I say to myself "...I do not have to go to work. If I am exhausted in the day I can sleep. Just let it go and be".

If I do have something I need to do the next day (volunteering, travelling, commitments etc. I try to relax still, but it is harder.

I did go back to bed around 5:00am and fell asleep until 9:30...yay!!!

Polar Bear said...

I hate insomnia. I hope this won't be a continuing problem for you.