If I Only Had A Nickel For Each Of The Sleep Tips I’ve Been Given

July 28, 2010

in Barnaby, Your Stories

Barnaby here.  After spending a restless hour in bed watching my wife sleep I decided to come back out on the porch in order to catch the sun rise.  Enjoying picturesque Florida sunrises each morning has been one pleasant benefit of my recent insomnia issues — however, candidly, I’d give up seeing the sun rise ever again in return for just one full night’s sleep.  It has been over two weeks since I’ve gotten more than four hours on any given night, and it is beginning to take its toll.  My boss has noticed — and so have my kids.  I’ve become uncharacteristically irritable, and the lack of sleep is beginning to show in my face.  Some days, I hardly recognize myself.  After talking to friends, a plethora of doctors along with complete strangers, I’ve received what must be hundreds of sleep tips.  They range from the serious (issues like sleep apnea) to the bizarre (one of the sleep tips told to me was to drink garlic spiked hot chocolate before attempting to go to sleep).

My current condition has caused me to become quite educated about the causes of insomnia, but unfortunately to this point none of the plethora of sleep tips I’ve discovered has worked for me.  It started with paying attention to everything I ate or drank after 6pm.  No more expresso with Sambuca after dinner, no more night time Mt. Dews and no chocolate in the evenings.  I scrutinized everything I consumed during the evening hours, and if it contained even the smallest hint of caffeine I abstained.  I’m not a huge drinker, but one of the sleep tips I received was to avoid alcohol in the evenings so I did — except for one especially bad night last week when another tipster told me to try 3 quick shots of Southern Comfort to see if that worked — but that’s a different story.

Another one of the easier sleep tips told to me was to make our bedroom as dark and quiet as possible.  Trust me, Suz wasn’t thrilled at all with hanging a black sheet over the nice shades at night — but far cheaper than black-out curtains, and hopefully my insomnia is gone soon.  I added to this earplugs and a sleep mask.  The sleep mask was extremely uncomfortable and only served to seriously freak out my 2 year old James when he saw me in it, so that was ditched.  So, starting around 10 days ago, each evening I went to bed without a hint of caffeine in my body in a very dark (but unfashionable with the ugly black sheet hanging on the wall) bedroom.  Problem solved, right?  I only wish it was that easy.

The sun is rising now.  It really is beautiful, but at this point it has become almost a dreadful sight for me to see once again.  Time to jump in the shower and fib to Suz once again telling her I was able to get at least a few hours of sleep.

More coming later,

Barnaby

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