Intermittent Insomnia…?

For Sam’s linky The Truth About this week, I wanted to write a post about my insomnia.  However the truth is, I am far too tired to write it!  Instead I have made a little video which documents a little snippet of my experiences of sleepless nights.  As I say in the video, I’m probably not as good at talking as I am at writing, but the truth is, it is the best I could do today!

I’m keeping everything crossed that this video doesn’t put you to sleep!

And then the fun began...
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5 thoughts on “Intermittent Insomnia…?

  1. Great vlog!!! Poor you though, that sounds pants. There is nothing more annoying than lying awake when the children are asleep, and then waiting for them to wake up! But please don’t take a gun to your head!!! xx

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  2. Oh I really feel for you – there’s nothing worse than lying awake and being unable to sleep, and it’s even more frustrating when your children are sound asleep too! But agree with Spidermummy, definitely don’t take a gun to your head! I occasionally get insomnia too and like you, in my pre-mobile phone days, I used to just write stories or whatever came into my head. These days, I get on the phone which I think is worse as it is a bit of a stimulant and more likely to keep me awake. I have used hypnotherapy CDs in the past which can be quite helpful for helping me relax, switch my mind off and get back to sleep – might be worth a try if you haven’t already given this a go. Hope you manage to get some sleep tonight x

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  3. I really do sympathise – I have suffered from insomnia from time to time in my life, mostly in my very young days (not much older than Finley) but intermittently and very infrequently since. It’s hard to know what triggers it, although it has sometimes been work-related – particular difficult day coming up, not being prepared for important meeting, etc. You even nod off successfully, only to wake up, metaphorically bolt-upright, at about 1.30 in the morning, your head alive with thoughts and misgivings about the day to come. And can you convince your head to shut up and go back to sleep? Can you, heck!

    Usually, when the day actually arrives, everything’s fine – all fears, apprehensions or dreads are back in the box and you wonder what the hell you were worrying about. The only trouble is, you are now suffering from such a lack of sleep that you are barely able to function.

    It isn’t just work-related “night-terrors” – just about anything can worm its way into your head and start nudging your synapses. The thing is, any chain of thought that arises in the dead of night seems so much more prominent than it would do in the day when you’re up and doing, dealing with all the stuff around you. That’s because when you’re lying there in the dark with nothing going on to distract you – just whatever you awoke to. Or, even worse, what you started to think about just before you were about to doze off. (That can keep your head going for HOURS!) As a result, your thoughts occupy nearly 100% of your now-awakened head and loom so much larger as a result.

    So what do you do? Like you said, it’s so BORING – you can’t sleep, so you want to go and do something. Well, that’s an answer, but you will be fully awakened and terminally prevented from the remainder of your night’s sleep if you do. I even dread mid-night (not midnight) bathroom breaks because just that short walk to the loo and back will seriously compromise my sleepfulness*. If you have a book on the go, you could read a few pages. It will distract your head, and will maybe induce doziness fairly soon. The downside is, of course, the risk of disturbing your partner who will almost certainly be seriously unappreciative!

    You could just get up and start going about your day (ironing, cleaning, editing files, sorting out the CDs, anything … I once cleaned our dresser – inside, outside, glass, woodwork, and even contents – at 5 am.) The downside of this is that you may well want to go back to sleep at around 11, a luxury you may not be able to allow yourself (especially in your workplace!)

    Having a drink (alcoholic) never works. Alcohol is counter-productive; it may be a depressant but it also messes up your sleep patterns. And it won’t stop you thinking – it just stops you thinking rationally, which is even worse. A warm, milky (for example) drink can help – even coffee or tea. Caffeine doesn’t tend to suddenly make you wakeful if you habitually consume it. Horlicks may be better, of course. The downside of any of the above is the activity needed to prepare and consume said drink will put you into wakeful mode.

    But here’s the thing. If you bite the bullet, get up, go to the kitchen and knock up some sort of gently-warm brew and slowly sip it, having brought that book with you, after a while it may put through the stages of being awake, aware and normalised. And because you haven’t had enough sleep, it begins to feel like night-time again, and you start to feel sleepy. With luck, the intrusive, tumbling thoughts have died away and you’re ready for bed again. It may cost you an hour of sleep time, but it’s sleep time you weren’t able to use anyway.

    So my treatment is – have a cuppa and a read. It sometimes works, and it’s better than staring at a dark ceiling waiting for the night to finish while still deeply resenting the day that will follow.

    Great vlog, by the way – nearly forgot to say! Love dad xx

    * Word I just invented

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  4. Wow I feel like I’ve just experienced both a blog and vlog on the subject of insomnia! Really nice to see you talking in person and absolutely fine to link up a vlog – I’m imressed and feel like i know you more from seeing you on video! I generally get to sleep OK unless I’ve had an argument with the husband when I definitely can’t switch off. i think that starting to worry about how you’re not going to cope the next day without more sleep really exacerbates it as well. I hope you find some solution – there must be some sort of books written on the subject – or maybe some kind of meditation tape you could listen to, to help you relax – breathing exercises etc.? Worth a go – or maybe you’ve already tried these things… Anyway I wish you luck and thanks again for linking up to this week’s #thetruthabout hon Xx

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