The Agony and the Ecstasy of Sleep

Anxiety. When I think of sleep, thats the feeling that comes over me. Sleep used to be something I would look forward to. Sleep was something you cherished on the weekend after working a long week. Ahh, the thought of stretching out in my bed for 8 plus hours was my goal.

Now, the thought of sleep brings on the feelings of anxiety and panic. The complete opposite of all those fuzzy and warm feelings. That great reward.

Nope, not anymore. Now I average about 3-5 hours of ‘Broken Sleep’. My definition of broken sleep is, well, sleep that is broken. Meaning I cant sleep more than an hour before my eyes pop open, or sweat wakes me up, or my personal favorite, the bathroom. Then of course you try to shut your eyes, tightly, and hope and wish yourself back to sleep. Nope.

We all know sleep is important, its actually vital to our survival and our sanity. But what happens when something you look forward to and loved turns into something you despise and find stressful.

Although I still get stressed thinking about sleep, I managed to turn the process around for myself.

How I manage the anxiety of sleep.

1. I try to go to bed happy, so I may watch something interesting or funny, not sad or aggravating. Now that almost kicks out everything on TV, but I manage to find something to make me laugh.

2, I now embrace getting up early. Trust me I never did before. I find getting up early to be my own personal time of peace, quiet, and reflection. Now how early do I get up? Well that depends. But the usual is 3-3:30 am. Sounds crazy but I actually like it. In the summer, I go outside and watch the sun rise with a cup of coffee or just listen to music. My favorite thing to do now is, well, this. I write, blog, and get my calendar up to date. Which leads me to the last step.

3. Writing either before I go to bed or when I get up in the morning empty’s my thoughts onto the paper or computer. It’s a great way to free your mind of all those thoughts clogging your brain. It feels good to start the day fresh and organized.

In the end, I still feel some trepidation when I near the proverbial bedtime, but now I can relax before bed and even after I wake up obscenely early.

As a side note, since I battle Multiple Sclerosis, I don’t like to take sleep aids, either over the counter or prescription. I say that only because I am already fatigued during the day, and I don’t like feeling anymore tired than I already do. Plus, I don’t want to wake up groggy and foggy. But thats just me. I am not against sleep aids, I just learned other ways to achieve the same goal.

So to everyone, sleep tight and don’t let your disease bite. If it does, bite it back!!! Good Night and Good Morning and Good Luck!!