Must Stay Awake…

Today I tried something new with my sleep schedule. I have always struggled with getting to bed at a decent time, but lately it’s been worse than ever. It’s a rare and good day if I’m up by 3:30 (I can’t believe I’m admitting that on the internet). Lately I’ve been waking up closer to 8 at night. Part of it is because after 11 at night seems to be the only time I feel decent and I hate cutting back on that “good” time.  Part is because depression gives me the worst feelings of fear and loneliness when I try to sleep and I prefer to wait until someone else is awake so I feel safer and less alone. And part of it is so I can avoid my brother.  I hate admitting it, but it’s true. I’ve had a brother for almost a year now – my family chose to adopt a 14 year old. It’s been a real struggle due to his behavior and angry outbursts. He’s a good kid and I really want to be a good big sister to him, but it’s so hard. I feel like I can never say or do the right thing when I’m with him. It always ends with him getting mad or storming off or pouting. I know it’s selfish, but I feel like I have so little to give right now as I struggle to handle college part time with my health. Every encounter with him drains my energy. I just kind of gave up and started not leaving my room for the day until 9:30, when he goes to bed.

But I want to change. My current schedule is not good for my health or my family. Sometimes it seems impossible, because I feel like my narcolepsy controls me. I often spend hours at night trying to sleep to no avail, and entire days where I’m literally “stuck” asleep. I woke up for the day at 10:30 Sunday night, frustrated and angry with myself since I had planned to spend the day studying for a physiology test due the next day. I pulled an all-nighter in preparation and, instead of crashing in bed once the test was over like usual, I decided to try something new. My sleep doctor had the suggestion of falling asleep an hour later every night until I circled the clock and got to a decent time for bed. This seemed way too difficult to achieve, but I thought starting when my body was already completely screwed up would make it easier. After my all-nighter, I had my test and then therapy and didn’t get home until 4. I then ate “dinner”, got ready for bed, and took my sleeping pills. It felt REALLY strange, especially right after daylight savings, but waking up at 7:45 this morning with no alarm was incredible!

The rest of the day has, unfortunately, been not so incredible. My level of fatigue is so high even with my usual 12 hours of narcoleptic sleep that trying to function while sleep deprived is completely miserable. My emotions are in overdrive – sad things are so sad I could die, mildly funny things are the best most humorous things I have ever heard. My body feels like it’s trying to wade through a pit of tar, and it hurts even more than usual.  I’m so spaced out that I forget what I was doing 30 seconds ago. I prefer the days I’m in a crash and can’t sit up for more than five minutes than today. I can’t accomplish a thing under either circumstance but when I’m in a crash I have no control over it. Right now I know I could just sleep for a few hours and then I’d be able to do homework – that makes it really difficult to want to push to stay awake all day. I am also really lonely. I woke up when my dad and brother were gone for work/school and my mom was still asleep. I can’t see my mom during the day because she teaches and I’ll have to go to bed before she finishes. We normally hang out at night watching “our” tv shows and joking around. I’m wondering if it’s worth it to lose that and lose the one time of the day I feel alright. Ideally we could all be together as a family and this schedule should mean I can see other people more instead of less…I hope that’s the case. Right now the sleep deprived depression is getting to me and making it for a few more hours sounds impossible. I’m going to try incorporating a short nap into my day tomorrow to see if that improves things.

Very boring post, but as previously mentioned I’m barely awake.


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