What Keeps You Up at Night

Insomnia!

InsomniaIs this you when you try to fall asleep at night?  This is me every night.  Ugh!!!!

I want to go to sleep!  That is my mantra every single night before I hop into bed.  My mind will not shut off.  My thoughts are random one-liners.  For instance, “which project shall I work on tomorrow?”, “I wonder if I will have time to run to the store?”,I need to make a doctor appointment“, and my favorite, “what shall I cook for dinner tomorrow?”. 

Depending on bed time, that last thought won’t happen for another 18 hours.  Why am I worried about dinner when I’m about ready to go to bed?  That’s another thought I ask myself… see where I’m going here?  I’m actually answering my own thoughts!

This back and forth could go on for hours, until I realize it’s now one o’clock in the morning and I need to get serious about sleeping before I have to get up and work; right?  I try to stay away from any news feeds in the evening, that just adds to the worry.  For instance, “how in the heck can a father kill his wife and kids?” Why do I contemplate this question?  There’s really nothing I can do.  I can’t bring them back from the dead and I certainly can’t judge the father.  That’s up to our judicial system; right?  That begs the next thought “What in the world is wrong with our judicial system?” … and the thoughts continue.  

Here’s a good one.  I’m about to finish my first quilt.  I’m super excited because I’m going to give it to my grandson for Christmas.  This is my new hobby.  Last night all I could think about was sewing the borders and should I quilt it myself or send it to the quilter.  Why can’t I think of this when I’m quilting?  

Different Types of Insomnia

There are two types of insomnia.  I did not know this.  There is acute insomnia and there is chronic insomnia.  Apparently acute insomnia is brought about by stress, family issues, work related issues.  Maybe it affects some of us more than others.  This type of insomnia can last for days or weeks.  Chronic insomnia lasts for months or longer.  I’m the “or longer“.  My brain does not shut down in the evening.  I have tried herbal teas, sleeping aids, a drink or two (or three). White noise doesn’t work, either.  Nothing works!

How many of us suffer from insomnia?  Probably quite a few. 

Last night I was counting, one, one thousand, two one thousand .and when my mind wandered, I started over again, and again.  By two o’clock (I think) I was sleeping. 

Chronic insomnia can lead to other illnesses (of course!).  Something else to worry about.

Research advises that we seek a consultation with a doctor.  So that’s what I did.  I don’t think doctors want to go into our history, they just want to prescribe a little pill that the pharmaceutical rep dropped by yesterday that guarantees sleep.  Good luck trying to find a doctor that will actually do an analysis of your health and order some tests to make sure there are no underlying health conditions contributing to the insomnia.

My research indicates that the leading cause of lack of sleep is snoring.  I don’t know if a sleep study would help, but at this point I’m willing to give it a try.  Maybe a lifestyle change?  But what do I change about my lifestyle?  Maybe I should journal.  Put all these thoughts down on paper so I don’t have to think about them any more.  Or would that just make room for more thoughts?

Well, this is going nowhere. (Sigh)

~Chris

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