Sleep or something like it


I don’t sleep well. I don’t have a problem falling asleep, necessarily, but I can’t stay there. I have a very, very hard time staying there. My friend Tylenol PM helps with that some nights. I just hate the after effects — You don’t really wake up for about 24 hours.

I have a hard time getting my mind to stop. Some people would call those “racing thoughts.” When I lay in bed at night, I think about things that happened earlier, things I need to do tomorrow, something that happened in 1999, whether I turned the thermostat down, if I have time for laundry tomorrow, the phone calls I didn’t get around to returning, what to get someone for their birthday.

You get the point.

I can’t turn it off.

And if I lay down with even the slightest bit of tension before? (Say, a bad day, a headache, a stupid argument) Even worse.

I end up deprived for five days. On Saturday and Sunday, I will wake up for a little bit and then sleep until noon. Maybe longer. Then I’m fine.

I have chronic fatigue syndrome. I’m not looking for an “aww, poor baby” or even a “that must suck.” Know that it does suck. Imagine what you would feel like if you slept 10 hours a night and felt like you hadn’t slept for days. The only way I get through it is I manage it as well as I do. I don’t LET it get the best of me. I’m in charge here, not you, fatigue. I’m going to enjoy living whether you like it or not.

It’s odd to share a sleeping space with someone again. To be rather blunt, I didn’t share a sleeping space with my ex-husband for the better part of a year before we got divorced. To walk back into that world takes a lot of adjustment. Sometimes it’s nice. Other times you yearn for what it was like when there was nobody sprawled out on that pillow-top but you.

(70-30? Eh, 80-20. Maybe 80-20.)

But I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong with the not sleeping through the night. Lately, it’s been strange dreams keeping me up. I’ve had a tornado in my dreams for the last three weeks. Sometimes, I’m in it. Other times, it’s just in the background. Two nights ago, a bunch of us were in a building watching one and talking about how cool it was to see what kind of destruction a tornado could leave.

I looked it up in the dream dictionary. Here’s what it says:

To see a tornado in your dream, suggests that you are experiencing some extreme emotional outbursts and temper tantrums. Is there a situation or relationship in your life that may be potentially destructive?

To dream that you are in a tornado, signifies that you are feeling overwhelmed and out of control. You will be met with a series of disappointments for the next week or so. Your plans will be filled with complications.

To see several tornadoes in your dream, represent people around you who are prone to violent outbursts and shifting mood swings. It may also symbolize a volatile situation or relationship.

Weird. You can take it for what it’s worth. I just thought it was because I was watching a lot of “Storm Chasers” and did research on vacations where you get to do ridealongs with people who chase tornadoes professionally. I can’t think of anything that’s really got me turned upside down or anything around me that’s particularly volatile. Things are pretty calm, actually.

I mean, do I need to start warming some milk at 9 p.m.? Maybe just accept Tylenol PM as part of a daily routine? Light some incense?


6 Responses to “Sleep or something like it”

  1. 1 Joe
    April 10, 2008 at 4:06 pm


    Actually, look at your caffeine intake and at what times. That’s usually a trigger for me.

  2. 2 Paige
    April 10, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Joe has a point. You do put away a lot of caffeine.

  3. April 10, 2008 at 9:06 pm

    I know. I think as an experiment, I may cut off the diet Mountain Dew at noon. I can see using it to get myself awake in the mornings, but then just switching to water or something.

    Ah, but diet Mountain Dew is so sweet and delicious.

  4. 4 Paige
    April 11, 2008 at 10:40 am

    Yeah, if you basically substitute Mountain Dew for coffee, then chug it in the morning and stop drinking it at lunch. That should give you enough time to get everything out of your system before you sleep, even if you down a 2 liter.

    Get the flavor packets for your water. It makes drinking water so much easier, if you find a flavor that you really like.

  5. 6 Angela
    April 13, 2008 at 2:47 pm

    Sleep has been kicking my ass the last few years, too. Here’s hoping it improves for us both. Soon! Good luck, Jacque. You know I’m cheering for you!

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