Thursday, August 01, 2013

Sleep Is So Overrated

I don't know why but when I turned 40 I stopped sleeping. Well, not completely, as by now I'd probably be dead or at least in an asylum somewhere. But the days of restful sleep ended for me as I entered into my fourth decade of life.

From age 40-43ish were the worst. I damn near lost my mind and the mere fact that I am still married just proves that I snagged a good one. I alternated between Xanax and Lunesta during that time just so I could grab enough winks to tend to my little ones. I never took either prescription for too many days in a row for fear that I would become dependent. 

Once that phase passed, sleep seemed to come a little easier at night, though I still go through bouts of restless nights. Such has been the past week.

Last night it came to a head and I almost went postal.

I suffer from restless leg syndrome and when it acts up I can guarantee sleep will be difficult. But I can not completely blame the uncontrollable leg jerks and heebie jeebie feelings in my left leg for last night's prevention of shut eye. Yes, it began my plight, but the circus main attraction that is my life is to blame for the almost explosion of my head.

I went up to bed with Mr. Schmitty at 10:30. My leg was annoying me and I knew it was my body's way of saying it was time to rest. The oldest was in bed watching YouTube videos on his iPod and after I threatened him with taking away all electronics the next day, he promised not to stay up ALL night. The middle child was tucked in and his eyes were already closing and the youngest had gotten into her sleep position now that her book was confiscated and placed in my room. She'll totally stay up and read all night if we don't take it away.

Yeah, can you believe that I get upset that she wants to READ all night. In a few years she'll be climbing out of the window to meet up with her boyfriend or her BFF's to go drinking. Then I'll wish she had a book.

One last look at the clock, 10:45....lights out....let's do this!

Poke, poke in my cheek....huh, WTF?!! 

R. was staring at me in the dark. "The kids were talking about Bloody Mary today, I'm scared, I want to sleep with you."

Fucking Bloody Mary. That story scared me as a kid and it has come back to haunt me as a parent.

Mr. Schmitty grabbed his pillows and swapped them and beds with her. It was 11:55. At least I had fallen asleep quickly, perhaps it will happen again. Well, once Miss gabberjaw stops talking. Sigh.

The last I remember the clock read 12:42.

You know those dreams that make you feel like you are falling? Yeah, well I wasn't having one of those, I was actually on the verge of falling....out of my bed. The munchkin, all size 6 of her, had managed to take over most of the queen sized bed and I was moments from hitting the floor. I scooted her back over to her side and rolled onto my back. 1:13.

Then? I felt a sudden, crushing weight on my chest. Anxiety? Angina?! HEART ATTACK?! No! The furball cat decided she wanted some loving. After I yanked her claws out of my boobs, I tossed her off the bed. Then I heard a noise. I sat up and listened. Nothing. I put my head back on the pillow. I heard it again, this time purposely louder so I would hear it. It was a whine but it was not human.

I got up and walked into the hallway and there she was, the dog, with her nose under the door to R.'s room. She was whining that her master was on the other side without her. Are you kidding me?! I did not want to wake Mr. Schmitty as he had to work in the morning, so I did what you would expect, I tossed my bra on the floor for Ruby to guard.

What?! Doesn't your dog protect your dirty undergarments?

I got back into bed and under the covers, 2:00. Then the real tossing and turning began. Left side, right side, flat on my back, propped up....I even pushed the twins under the armpits and tried sleeping on my stomach. Those who know me are like, "WHAAAAAT?!" 

Yes, I was THAT desperate.

Finally at 3:30 I got up and with a pillow and a fuzzy throw blanket, I sat in the living room recliner, flipped up the foot rest and leaned all the way back. I closed my eyes. Ssssqqqquuuuueeeekkk. The boy's bedroom door opened and I remembered I needed to find that can of WD40. W.'s shadow crossed the hallway and SLAM! went the bathroom door. I tried to get up to ward off any more noise from the teen but I couldn't move my legs. Izzy the cat had decided to curl up on top of the blanket between my calves.

By the time I freed myself W. was already back in his room and T. was emerging, pillows and a blanket in his arms, "Can I sleep down there with you?"

"Sure honey, join the party!"

He gave me an unsure look as he passed me to get to the couch. I am sure he thought I had gone mad. He was not far off base. I pulled the blanket up to my chin only to push it to the floor a moment later when a hot flash hit.

Sure! Why not add that to the mix? 

Click. Click. Click. Clickity clickity click. I kept my eyes closed tight as Ruby's nails tapped on the hardwood floors. It was like Chinese water torture. Click. Click. Click. Clickity clickity click. What was she doing? And then it dawned on me. Oh hellz no! Don't do it! Don't you do it dog!!!

Scratch scratch at the back door. Guess who had to shit?!

Gritting my teeth I turned on the outside light and let the "designer" mutt out into the yard. "Go to the bathroom!!!" I sneered. She quickly ran down the wooden steps and did her business as though she understood that my mental health was on the line. She then proceeded to sniff ever inch of grass in the yard for the next 15 minutes and totally ignored my hushed screams of, "get your ass in here!" and "Come! You pain in my ass!"

Her Majesty finally came in and I settled back into the recliner. I looked at the digital clock on the cable box. 4:30 in the morning. Mr. Schmitty's alarm would be waking him in 30 minutes for work. I pictured him coming down the stairs looking totally refreshed from a good night's sleep. In the dark I heard his snoring from R.'s room. If I weren't so tired I would probably have smothered him with a pillow, but instead, I drifted off.....finally.



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