Since 2005 I have struggled with sleeping, it can take me hours to get to sleep. Then I’ll keep waking up. Then can’t get back off again. So far, so insomnia.
I tried sleeping tablets, but hated the horrible taste in my mouth the morning after. To be honest; they also didn’t help any – I just felt dopey – as well as wondering why my food tasted revolting. I limit my caffeine; for all my jesting about coffee, I only have one or two a day, everything else is I drink is decaf or water.
After a while, I ended up resigning myself to feeling sluggish and tired all the time. My mind would whirr away; replaying things over and over, or creating new things for me to be anxious about. I eventually found a solution that worked for me though, I would listen to audiobooks and “write” the words out in my mind with visualisation. Listening to and “writing” would let me fall asleep simply because my monkey mind wouldn’t get an opportunity to chatter at me. If I woke up in the night, I’d rearrange the headphones under my pillow and do the same thing all over again.
Last week I had a bit of a breakthrough. Monday night was awful, as Hubs was snoring like a train, and the cat stank. I don’t know what had happened, but Chief Brody was shoved outside for the night, Tuesday morning I cut fur off around his bum and we’ll leave it at that #bleee
On Tuesday night I decided ‘Enough’, I lay in bed and concentrated on my breathing and drifted off, waking to my alarm on Wednesday morning. Also, Buddhify have updated their app and have some new meditations. That night I listened to a five minute version of near enough the same thing I’d done the day before; it asks you to concentrate on the lower half of your body, hand on your belly to feel it rise and fall with your breath. I woke up before my alarm and lay in bed listening to the birds going crazy in the tree outside our house. I was so excited, it was ridiculous.
On Tuesday night this week, I slept so well I actually wondered what happened. Right through to wake up to the birds again.
I’m now at day eleven of not drinking. Using the Jerry Seinfeld method of keeping going, I’m marking crosses off on my wall planner. Now having got ten in an albeit wonky column, I don’t want to break the chain. There are several reasons for this, to say a few things have collided. This article for one thing with this quote:
“In my head, I was a moderate drinker, but after I’d had a drink, I wasn’t. The more I drank, the more I wanted to drink. Drinking increased my thirst. I wanted the second drink more than the first, and I wanted the fifth more than I’d wanted the fourth.”
The first article on this edition of Woman’s Hour, (seriously , if you’re not subscribed to this podcast, why not?) the two ladies that are talking were speaking my language. I have to admit that I am done, I can’t do half-hearted any more. I can’t do moderate, because as soon as I’ve had one drink, I want another. As you can imagine, this decision has not been made easily. But also realise that I will be sleeping better with no alcohol in my system.
I’m listening to (and reading) Russell Brand’s Recovery: Freedom from our addictions and working my way through his thirteen step program. I’m not sure about going to AA to get some physical (as in people) support, I’m not convinced I could do the god bit without grinding my teeth. Higher power is one thing, but naming it?? There are several secular meetings near me, if I need it – I know they’re there.