Insomnia is a gross feeder. It will nourish itself on any kind of thinking, including thinking about not thinking. ~Clifton Fadiman
It’s been almost a week since I wrote about my new relationship with insomnia, but I feel like I have to bring it up again. I am simply not sleeping through the night. I am not a newborn. I am a grown woman who is now awake for hours at a time every night. It seems to be getting worse. I used to be able to go right to sleep at night. Now I am even losing that luxury.
I am not writing this to complain. I am absolutely fascinated by this new turn of events in my life. It seems to affect so many things. First and foremost it is affecting my ability to funcion properly during the day. I feel like I am sleepwalking my way through the day. If I can manage to muster up the energy to take Jack to the playground I find myself not even playing with him. I just stand there in a strange daze.
When you have insomnia, you’re never really asleep, and you’re never really awake. ~From the movie Fight Club, based on the novel by Chuck Palahniuk
When we finally head home the first thing I do once we are in the door is put the television on just so I can sit down and rest my eyes for a few moments. I let Jack watch a show so I can magically gather some energy then we play together in his room or “wash” dishes in the sink. Then, I anxiously watch the clock waiting for Dan to return home from work. When he does he is awesome and immediately takes Jack outside so that I can lay down for a few moments. A lot of the time I do not lay down though because I take one look around our apartment and feel guilty that I haven’t cleaned up the mess that seems to follow Jack wherever he goes. More than half of the time I could spend resting is then spent doing the dishes or simply picking up all the little toys that seem to blanket the floor of our place.
I have made the mistake of sharing this insomnia information with people who simply think that I am being a big baby about the whole thing. A few people have actually said, “Welcome to the wonderful world of motherhood.” WTF!? I am not waking up because Jack isn’t sleeping through the night. I am waking up on my own and then am unable to get back to sleep. Leave my kid out of it! I am. Other’s simply roll their eyes and say, “You know what? We did it for years with two kids and now it is your turn so stop complaining. You’ve got to be tough” Again, LEAVE MY KID OUT OF THIS! And you know what? I birthed a baby that was almost 9 pounds (most of it in his head) for goodness sakes. I am tough. (Clearly, it was a man who made these last insensitive comments.)
My dear friend Meg, who is due to give birth in less than two weeks was kind enough to offer to come to my place to help me today. As tempting as it sounded and as generous the offer was I just couldn’t accept. Heck, I couldn’t even get dressed today. It’s one o’clock and I am still in my pajamas. I wanted to accept, but I also just wanted to wallow in private. I keep stealing little moments to close my eyes. A minute here, a second there. It’s not much, but it is getting me through the day.
I guess this is simply something that I have to suffer through alone. Only a handful of people are actually understanding and sympathetic. To the rest of you who have rolled your eyes or pointed out how you are so much tougher than I am you can just kiss my exhausted ass. I truly hope that you don’t find yourself up in the middle of the night unable to go back to sleep, watching the sky lighten. It is not the greatest feeling. I am seeing the doctor tomorrow and am going to beg for some help because I don’t know how much more of this I can take. I don’t want to sleepwalk through my life. I just want to sleep.
A flock of sheep that leisurely pass by
One after one; the sound of rain, and bees
Murmuring; the fall of rivers, winds and seas,
Smooth fields, white sheets of water, and pure sky –
I’ve thought of all by turns, and still I lie
~William Wordsworth, “To Sleep”