For more than a year I've been battling a serious case of insomnia. To be honest, it started when Jasmine was first born. Unbeknownst to Mr. A, I would sneak out of the room, and creep into her room to check on her. I suppose that's normal for first time moms. But then my insomnia was quickly spiraling out of control-- to the point where Mr. A was getting pretty concerned. It was so bad that I was averaging 2 hours of sleep per night- IF I was lucky.
And then there was the stress. I was so stressed that my mind was always on the grind. I would try to shutdown at night, but the second I closed my eyes I would get these flashes of things I still needed to do. My life was starting to bleed into my dreams. Suddenly the 2 hours per night I was getting was turning more into an hour or 30 minutes at best. And it was always broken. I would just suddenly jolt awake, thinking I had been asleep for hours- only to find that I had only been asleep for 15 minutes. This went on for months, more than a year, in fact.
Most nights/mornings were spent on the couch in a half-sleep-half-working zombie-like state. I would stay up all night trying to juggle everything. But, as we all know, juggling only works until it doesn't.
And then one day Mr. A came home and found me on the floor- sobbing. That pressure that had been building finally just gave way. I cried so hard, I cried myself to sleep. Which was really the best thing that could have happened because sleep is truly what my body needed.
We both decided that this had gone on for far too long. I started taking melatonin at night to help my body slow down. I also stopped drinking the 4 cups of coffee a day my body had become accustomed to. Especially in the evening. And that was hard. I had come to rely on that 6:00 o'clock cup of coffee to perk me up for my all-nighters. I started sleeping in the bedroom again. Even if I wasn't tired, I would turn off my phone and just stare at the ceiling until I was.
Those first few weeks of trying to normalize my sleeping habits were the hardest. My body was so worn out from nearly a year of no rest that for the first week or two, getting 6-8 hours a sleep every night actually made me more tired. My body soaked up those extra hours of sleep like a sponge in the desert, and left me in a groggy state.
Looking back at the past year I wondered how I was even able to function. But then I realize I actually wasn't. Physically I was there, but mentally, I was in a perpetual state of exhaustion, unable to focus or hold a decent conversation without spacing out.
I'm not going to say that my sleeping habits are completely back on track. Occasionally, I still wake up at 2:00 a.m. on the couch. But now, once I realize what I'm doing, I shuffle straight to the bedroom, pop a few melatonin and try to shut it off for the night.
I guess we can all get caught up in life. The important thing is that we don't allow it to consume everything. Life is stressful, no doubt, but trying to tackle it while your running on E is akin to taking on a martial arts expert when you yourself have no training at all. It's just asking for trouble.
So if any of this sounds familiar, you may want to rethink some things. In the grand scheme, sleep doesn't seem all that important, but in order to keep up with the fast pace of our world, it's a necessity.
If you are going through this, I pray that you find resolution for whatever demons you may be battling during those long sleepless nights. I pray that you find a way to turn it off long enough to save up the strength that you'll need to slay those dragons. But most of all, I wish you many nights filled with beautiful dreams and fluffy sheep.