My Battle with Insomnia

Not to be overly dramatic or anything, but guys, I am hanging on by a thread.  A thin, frayed thread precariously close to snapping.  My life is not in danger and there are far worse things to battle, but referring to this as my battle with insomnia feels fitting because I have been dealing with this off and on for a long time.  There is no rhyme.  There is no reason.  I go to bed just like I do every other night, except there is that one night I wait for sleep and it doesn't come.  Not that night, or the next, or the next.

A photo posted by Cece🌺 (@mahoganydrive) on
I went to see the Lion King on Sunday.  It was so entertaining and so good.  Lions dancing, mountains moving and can you feel the love tonight?  I felt it.  It was great, but I could barely keep my eyes open.  Sunday matinee performances after a carb heavy brunch and a mimosa is enough to make anyone feel a bit drowsy, but I was fighting sleep almost the entire time.  Fighting so hard, that it was kind of painful, and that's been my life for going on two weeks now.  My eyes are glazed over and heavy inside my skull.  I don't quite have a headache, but the tension in my head pulses and the energy it takes to keep my eyes open when every cell in my body is telling me I need to sleep is nauseating.

I worked out six days last week.  This week I'm doing five.  Working out has been non negotiable for so long that I'm on auto pilot.  No matter how tired I am, I take off my clothes and wiggle into a sports bra as soon as I walk in the door. I might as well work out.  It's not like I can sleep instead.  I feel a temporary burst of energy right after I work out, but by the time I've showered and made my way downstairs for dinner, usually around 7:00ish, it's gone and I'm crashing all over again.

I'm exhausted, but I still can't sleep.

I get into bed and lay down from about 8:30-9:00pm to 6:20am, so according to my Fit Bit I'm sleeping, but I'm not! When my alarm goes off in the morning I'm already awake.  I think I'm going to be okay, but by the time I get to work I don't know how I'll make it.  Over the weekend I didn't wake up at 7:00am.  I gave up at 7:00am because I was just laying there.  I can't say I don't sleep at all, but whatever it is that is happening isn't restful because it doesn't feel like sleep when I am aware that I am laying in bed trying to sleep.  I don't know how you dream without sleeping, but it happens.  You know those dreams when you are aware that you are dreaming and you feel kind of like you are trapped in your own body watching yourself dream?  It was like that.  

My magic pill rx doesn't work and it's not because I've been taking it too much.  I learned that lesson the hard way last year after taking it Sunday through Thursday for months.  My body adapted.  It stopped working and I had to tough it out on my own for a while.  Since that bout ended I have only used it occasionally, so I fully expected it to lull me to sleep.  I finally tried melatonin two nights ago.  Who knew it came in flavors?  The strawberry smelled so good I wanted to eat it like candy but I didn't.  I swallowed one pill and hoped for the best.  No luck.  I doubled it up last night.  Some luck.  I felt like I actually went to sleep as in a not aware that I am trying to sleep deep sleep for at least a few hours, but I think I was awake by 1:00am off and on.  Valerian Root is on deck.  Might as well try everything.

I don't have kids.  I'm supposed to be able to sleep when I want! I cannot function like this for much longer, and yet I have no choice, but to function like this for as long as it continues.  Sleep deprivation is a form of torture.  This is torture!  I don't feel as zombie like as I did yesterday, but sitting in front of a computer for eight hours is not helpful, so it will be another long day.

Does anyone else struggle with insomnia on a regular basis?  What works for you?


Stephanie said...

It's the absolute worst. There's only 2 ways to really help you, for good, but both involve doctor supervision - (1) sleep clinic or (2) the weird thing where they make you stay up for something insane, like 72 hours straight? And then you sleep EXACTLY 12 hours and it's supposed to reset your clock, but yeah, you need a doctor for that obviously. I've never had it long term so melatonin has worked for me as long as I don't take it daily.

Catherine Gacad said...

i've struggled with insomnia my whole life. i took ambien for many years...but last year i switched to trazadone. they are both very effective. talk to your doctor. i highly recommend drugs!

Tomes Edition said...

I recently started to experience this but i put it up to stress and i hope it doesn't linger for much longer. I love 7 hours of sleep nightly.

Faith said...

Ugh, I really was crossing my fingers for you. I've heard from a few friends that suffer from insomnia that melatonin works really well for them. I really hope you get some sleep. I'm sure the weekend couldn't come fast enough this week.

Carly Blogs Here said...

I'm so sorry to hear you're struggling with this. Having insomnia is one of the most frustrating feelings in the world. A few summers ago I really struggled with it, and couldn't find anything to work so eventually I just read Harry Potter, which helped calm my mind a little bit at least.

Rachel ¦¦ A Nesting Nomad said...

I'm sorry the melatonin wasn't successful! It's only a hormone so it kind of suggests nicely to your brain that it might be time to sleep now, but it's not going to knock you out. I think you need the prescription stuff for that, sorry. I feel awful for you, insomnia is horrible! I had it for a while thanks to some pain medication I was taking after my spinal fusion, and it's the most frustrating thing to lie awake and want to sleep but not be able to. I didn't even have to work at the time so I have no idea how you're managing it. I'd definitely recommend a trip to your doctor if you can...

Kari @ Kari Like Ferrari said...

CeCe, I'm so sorry to read this. I went through a bout of insomnia in law school and it suck, suck, SUCKED, so I feel at least a little of your pain. Strangely enough, despite all the other things I was trying, Zzz Quil actually worked the best and it's suppose to be non-habit forming. Not sure if it will help (I have no idea how strong it is in relation to the other options you've tried), but it's a pretty inexpensive product to try out.
I really hope things get better, and to echo what others have said, it might be a good idea to talk to a doctor.


Law_Fal said...

Melatonin worked for me for a while but then it made me start having crazy dreams so I cut back. I haven't tried the other supplement but I heard it makes your BCPills fritz out so I previously shred away from up. I was up pretty much all night and used that time to blog and read, but I'm literally at my desk contemplating laying under my desk for my lunch break. The prescriptions do stop working after so long. At this point I'm going to reup on lavender and see if that helps any. Good luck!!!

Dana said...

I have had insomnia. I have talked to the doctor about it but the medication that she gave me knocked me out so I stopped using it. The Night-quil Zquil helps.

Nylse Esahc said...

Its hormonal and a facet of the body changing. Try getting an oil diffuser and using lavender essential oil. Lavender is relaxing and puts you to sleep.

Or just go with it though that's kind of hard if you don't work from home like I do. I think working out really hard to the point of exhaustion helped - but I discovered this in hindsight.

Good luck.

PS - I was still there! Glad you posted that today. :) because I missed you.