Another sleepless night: insomniac 

I cannot control this insomnia. How can you control something which is beyond the realms of your realisation? By the time I realise that the words are whizzing round and round in my head – they’ve gone as fast as they arrived and spun round in there. I have no idea what they were saying. I have no idea what I am anxious/worried about to cause them to constantly be there. They are hidden within my subconscious, just beyond conscious grasp. I don’t even realise that they are there, doing it; nagging and gnawing and chipping away at my mind and my inability to sleep, until suddenly enough is enough and I dare myself a glimpse at my phone to see how long I have spent this time lying in the dark with my eyes shut but not asleep.

I know, obviously, that looking at the phone will not help – no matter how much I change it to “bedtime” mode… but by these points in the nights I have given up all hope if either way making a difference. I won’t sleep if I don’t look at the phone. I won’t sleep if I do.

Once again I have barely slept in weeks. I am an emotional wreck and I fear approaching a vast breakdown. My sleep/rest-deprived and therefore lowered immune system has kindly provided me with a virus leaving my body aching all over, unable to stop consuming fluids and food and just desperately needing sleep; sleep which is still out of reach. I no longer see a way out of this other than medication to literally knock me out. And yet I still do not want the medication. Part of me believes that medication is just a placebo and thus I’ll just be swallowing some magic pill for nothing; either it is a placebo or my mind will contort that it’s a placebo; either way it won’t work. The other part of me just does not want medication in order to function like a “proper” person..

I cannot remember from therapy what to do. How to stop this. I remember that seeing my therapist for those 12 sessions was like a safe sanctuary for me. I remember that she was good, kind, warm and friendly, and gave me (more than she should have) time every session. She was keen to help and I trusted her but my concentration and memory had meant I have taken little to nothing.. I know we did a lot of work together but I don’t know how any of it fits into practice to just enable me to sleep.. 

I just need sleep… I’ve tried counting sheep. I’ve tried peppermint tea and hot salty/foamy baths. I’ve tried running and exercising regularly/daily/at 1am. I’ve tried dozing to “easy watch” TV. I’ve tried reading and writing and colouring and ticking off jobs on the list.. tried eliminating things I think could be worrying me. I’ve tried pillows and no pillows, sleeping with and without husband/dog/different beds in the house. I’ve tried herbal tablets, massage and sprays. Smells that remind me of my mother; that are comforting, and yet still, sleep will not engulf me.

I cannot see a permanent way out of this. I am sure – in the short term – I will eventually get some sleep… but then a few weeks or months down the line the spiral will fall out of control once again and I do not know or understand how people get through this and come out the other side once and for all?

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4 thoughts on “Another sleepless night: insomniac 

  1. Sorry you’re insomnia is rearing its ugly head. I didn’t how horrible it is realise until being pregnant! Have you emailed your old counsellor? Maybe she can offer some help even though you can’t physically see her again , or a Skype session to help. I can’t offer any words of wisdom – acupuncture helped a little and also sleeping during day before 3pm but I know it’s not like having a full nights sleep. Thinking of you lovely, be kind to yourself and hope you feel better soon 😘😘 x

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  2. Hi Karen, I have no answers but just know that you are in my thoughts. Sorry you couldn’t make it today, we missed you. Lesley xxx

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    1. Oh thanks Lesley – that’s really sweet of you. I am so sad I couldn’t come especially as it was the last one for a while!! I still tried to come as well but got out of the shower and realised it was daft/don’t want to make anyone else ill!! Have a good Christmas and I will see you in the New Year? xx

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