Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Well That's One Thing We Have In Common

What you ask? Sleep. We all actually have to sleep. A fact which I find fascinating about humans.... and animals in general... but I digress...

You all know that I get very little sleep. So little that I'm sure some of you think that I must be exaggerating (I am not). And although I certainly wish I had more sleep the fact that I don't doesn't actually bother me... just the side effects of it.... if that makes any sense at all. You see I don't expect to sleep through the night. Waking up ten times?! Yeah that is a bit much. But I don't have a problem with a baby (or an adult... but we'll get to that later) waking up 3 times a night. Call me crazy but that seems perfectly reasonable.

Although I had times in my late adolescence when I could sleep for a good 13 hours straight... and on one occasion a shocking 23 hours (making my then step-mother more than a bit suspicious... and no I wasn't on anything thank you very much... I was just high on life!) The majority of my life I've been a sensitive sleeper. I may have been one of the few kids in all of creation that not only did not want a night light but required absolute darkness to sleep. I couldn't get settled for what seemed like hours, due to the sounds of the still awake house, and even once I was finally asleep I woke due to frequent nightmares.

To this day I not only have blackout shades but have also been known to cover those pesky green and red power lights with electrical tape to insure COMPLETE darkness. I dread spring because those damn birds will start chirping long before I'm ready to get up. I keep a humidifier running to drowned out the other ambient noises. Even still.... even before the baby, and before the seizures.... I will still wake up 2-3 times a night. I seem to often wake up during my dreams, whether or not that is actually true or just how it seems to me I do not know. When I wake up I cannot just roll back over and go to sleep.... oh no.... I have several crutches if you will. And try as I might I really can't fall back to sleep without them.

Every time I wake up I lie there wondering if I have to go to the bathroom. It really doesn't matter if I have to or not... at a certain point the amount of time wondering if I have to go exceeds the amount of time it would have taken me to just get up and go in the first place. And in the end I always get up and go. But it doesn't end there folks... that is just crutch number one. Crutch number two is applying lip balm. Crazy? Yes. But if I don't put it on I'll lie there, empty bladder and all, now debating whether or not my lips are chapped and/or in the process of chapping (yes also crazy and maddening). So when my kids wake up and need a snuggle or a nurse or a pacie or whatever before they can lay back down I have a lot of empathy for that. Hey even Mr F has his bag full of Halls cough drops he has to sleep with!

Let the Mrs Furious Sleep Study Commence!

My Sleep Stats:
go to sleep at 12:30 AM
Baby/Kid/Mr F snoring wakes me up 4-10 times
I go to the bathroom only 1x (this has taken a lot of effort)
wake up 9 AM


Danielle said...

I struggle with this too, although my problem is just that I am a restless sleeper. This has only happened since having kids for me though. I think my body is just so accustom to waking up in the night (newborns, sick babies, toddlers, etc...) that I just end up awake several times a night. Fortunately, I can usually get back to sleep relatively easily, but I still can't remember the last time I had a good 6-8 hour stretch of solid sleep. Gone are the days of being able to sleep (comatose)for 10 hours straight.

michelline said...

My sleep crutch is I HAVE to look at the clock or I can't return to sleep. And quite often I have to use the bathroom as well. Chris thinks I'm weird. Glad to know I'm not :)

Mrs. Furious said...

"Gone are the days of being able to sleep (comatose)for 10 hours straight"
word. Maybe someday we'll get them back.

Oh I think it is pretty common problem. I used to have to look at the clock but with Baby waking up so much I weaned myself of that habit so it wouldn't be depressing ;)
I actually know one couple where the husband is one who has to get up and go to the bathroom with every waking. They have separate rooms now since it ended up waking her up.

moi.bloggirl said...

oh my god. You have described my husband's sleep symptoms. I am a very very sound sleeper (so sound that at times I dont even wake to my baby's crying) but my husband needs total darkness, no sound and needs a fan/humidifier to drown other sounds to sleep. He even wakes up to spring mattress creaks during the night. I totally sympathize with you. You people have a hard life esp since you are always running during the day with incomplete sleep. :(

Julie said...

That's really funny about the lip balm because I am the same freaky way about it.

shelley said...

My husband can fall asleep anywhere in about 2 second - it takes me about 20 minutes, at least. If I have something on my mind it can take hours. I have to have a fan on for the noise and air circulation, feet out of the cover (I hate when my feet get hot), and snoring drives me insane. I often end up sleeping in another room just to escape the snoring. My hope everynigt is that I fall asleep before my husband starts snoring.

shelley said...

Oh and forget about him protecting me from intruders in the night....he sleeps through EVERYTHING! I am the one that is up checking out all the strange noises in the night.

Mrs. Furious said...

Are you obsessed with Blistex DCT. I have the little pots stashed under my pillows!

Mr F & I do sleep in separate rooms. Before we were married (and he weighed less) he didn't snore... so I could deal with the one or two waking caused by rolling over or breathing too close to me... but once he started snoring it was too much. He too sleeps through EVERYTHING. I can scream for him and he won't wake up... you have to literally shake him awake. Once all the kids are sleeping through and in their own rooms I'll let him back in. And he has to get back down to the 170s... that is the snoring threshold. We've actually proven that to be true when he lost weight last year... sadly he didn't keep it off!

Mrs. Furious said...

I actually like summer because (even though we have central air) I have a window unit and it is so loud and consistent that I get the best sleep of the year!
I wish I was a deeper sleeper but it just doesn't seem to be in the cards for me.

Mrs. Furious said...

I forgot to thank you for commenting!
thanks :)

Heather said...

I am loving the pregnancy = sleeping comatose. I used to have insomnia due to anxiety; not anymore! I'm completely knocked out every night. I'm wisely heeding the new moms' advice to enjoy it while I can. :)

Mrs. Furious said...

I hope that lasts for you!

Torey said...

Do people really ever sleep through the night? I don't think I ever have.

I'm now down to actually getting out of bed once a night. If the baby needs me, I get up, nurse, pee and get back to bed. Otherwise I only get up once to go to the bathroom. But of course, I must first lie there and decided if I DO in fact have to pee, and obsess over whether or not my getting up will wake the baby up, thus throwing the universe out of whack.

But I wake more often than that. I wake thinking I hear the baby, I wake actually hearing the baby, I wake hearing the husband, I wake hearing the dogs, and now, thanks to the morons who rented their house out of the ghetto superstars, I wake hearing the people down the street yelling and squealing their tires like the true bad asses they must be. It's totally obnoxious. Made more obnoxious by the fact that N sleeps through EVERYTHING!! And in the morning he'll say "Did Gup sleep all night?" And I'll think to myself, he woke up 9 times. How did you not notice???????????

And I'm a clock looker too. I HAVE to know what time it is. I mean, what if I don't really have time to fall back asleep before I have to get up?

Haley said...

I'm tired just think about how little you guys sleep! I see my sleepy future, oy.

And I too am addicted to my humidifier, to the point where I may be harming the paint on my bedroom walls...but it purrs so nicely.

Southern Fried Girl said...

I sleep well for now but we are childless. I generally have no problem going under but we did have a HUGE problem with hubs snoring that led to him on the couch many nights. Two sleep studies later and he now has a CPAP machine for his apnea and he shuts the hell up. However, I am now so used to sleeping with ear plugs that I do it anyway. If I don't get a solid AT LEAST 7 hours, it's just not pretty.

Ok, all of you moms can now commence with the hating of me. LOLOL. I promise when I give birth some day to the demon seed, I'll pay the price. Promise.

Mrs. Furious said...

" And in the morning he'll say "Did Gup sleep all night?" And I'll think to myself, he woke up 9 times. How did you not notice???????????"
Yes. Mr F does the same thing and it makes me want to strangle him.

sleep now ;)

Mrs. Furious said...

that crazy machine doesn't keep you up?
My brother had that and then had the surgery... which he doesn't recommend.

Deb said...

OMG... I thought it was just me with the "do I need to pee or not" and "I think I need lip balm. Wait... lick lips... yes... I think I do..." Even if I don't have to do either -- or drink water, which is my other crutch -- I can work myself up about all three enough that I have to do them or I can't go back to sleep.

Isn't Mr. F concerned he will fall asleep with a cough drop in his mouth and choke to death? I was addicted to them when I was pregnant, but that was always my biggest fear.

Mary said...

I don't have babies waking me up anymore, but for the last 10 years or so, I'll wake up around 2 a.m. and CANNOT get back to sleep until 5 a.m. I think about everything under the sun -- even things that happened when i was in second grade! I have 2 new sleep aides, though, and my nights are so much better. I take half a dose of Tylenol Sleep (I know, I know, it's a bad thing, but it's so hard being tired all the time!). I also like to listen to my iPod in bed -- I record NRP shows (This American Life if my fav.) Listening to the shows gets me to sleep really quickly.

Mrs. Furious said...

well I just called and asked him and he said "The thought has occurred to me" totally dry style. and then I laughed and said "I'm glad you're willing to risk it." (In case you wanted to verbatim account)

The lip balm! I thought I actually would be the only with that fixation. Yes I'll lick my lips and try to tell myself that their fine but then I'll feel the moisture evaporate and I'll get really nervous that they are chapping and I HAVE to get the lip balm out. God I love that stuff.

Mrs. Furious said...

I love my Unisom. If I had a long awake period I'd jump off a bridge! That would definitely push me over the edge. I think I like the dehydrating side effects of the Unisom most of all... I usually don't have to get up to go to the bathroom.... either that or I don't wake up enough to feel I should bother.

Nutmeg said...

Mine is hand lotion.

Sleep here is possibly worse than it's been a long time (not EVER, but close). Eli is getting up 4 or 5 times and it goes like... Wake up, 45 minutes to get him back to sleep, asleep for 15, Wake up. x 3 and then he'll sleep for 2 hours. Repeat. I almost fell asleep driving home from campus just now.

I think I need some hand lotion right now!

Seriously, have you tried white noise? It helps. I am not a light sleeper, historically. I could sleep through the apocalypse (as long as it didn't cause Eli to cry). But once awake, it takes me at least 45 minutes to fall back to sleep. I'm pretty sure I"ll die soon from lack of sleep. I wonder how long that takes.

Mrs. Furious said...

"I'm pretty sure I"ll die soon from lack of sleep. I wonder how long that takes."
LOL... I'll let you know ;)

seriously as long as Baby doesn't have an alert period I'm okay. Is he teething?

John Howard said...

I don't understand, why do you have to wonder if you have to use the bathroom?

Heather said...

That is too funny about going to the bathroom. If I am awakened from sleep at night, I have to pee, even if I just went 10 minutes before. If I don't get up and go, I just lie there and think about it.

Mrs. Furious said...

well it is slightly more complicated then just assessing whether or not I need to go to the bathroom. I try to figure out if I can actually prevent future wakings by proactively going.

I actually have what I call my "final pee". If I don't fall asleep immediately upon getting in bed I will actually get up 10 min later and pee again.

Marie said...

I need, need, need sleep to function. I'm usually in bed by 10 and up at about 6-7am. Mind you, I CAN stay up later, and do about once a week, but if I do it consistently I am miserable! Thank god my girls are all good sleepers. The only problem (lately) is that my 8mo. old was waking up at about 4am to eat, but she would then go right back to sleep to 6. But even that made me exhausted after a few nights.

Party animal I am not.

michelline said...

And he has to get back down to the 170s... that is the snoring threshold.

Well, if he gets to move back into the bed with you, that would probably provide a little incentive ;)

I'm fortunate that I have no sleep issues. I'm not a particularly heavy or light sleeper and I can get back to sleep easily if woken up. My only issue is that I don't get enough sleep because I like to stay up late and do stuff. When the kids were little, I the monitor would wake me up if necessary, so I didn't have to worry about them much. My only crutch is that I like white noise (Michelline does too), so we always with a fan. But I could get used to going without if I had to.

I read a couple of SF books about a group of kids that were genetically engineered not to require sleep. It was interesting. If they ever figure out how to engineer people to safely go sleepless, I'm first in line.

Chris Howard said...

That was me above, not Michelline.

Julie said...

Mrs F, for me it is not Blistex...I put all my money into the lip balms they have at Whole Foods...My favorite are the Ganache for Lips brand. I buy like 6 at a time. They are everywhere in my house and car.

Mrs. Furious said...

"that would probably provide a little incentive "
You'd think but we've known about that correlation for awhile now....

Sherry/Shay said...

Growing up, my grandma had chickens and roosters and those bastards would start making noise at the crack of dawn. I would sleep with a pillow over my face to keep the sun from blinding me and to drown out some of the poultry noise.

I can't go to sleep at night without my husband. If he checks his e-mail and I've made it to bed, I lay there fighting sleep until her gets there. Once he started working nights, I relied on tylenol pm for sleep because I couldn't fall asleep. Now I do go to sleep due to being exhausted, but I wake up right around the time he's due home and I stay awake until he climbs in bed. It irritates me when he doesn't immediately come to bed, even though I understand his need to shower. I'm just frustrated because I desperately want to sleep but can't. And of course the baby wakes up every now and again and lets out a little cry or sometimes needs to come to bed with me. But it's nothing compared to when Hanna (8) was a baby and toddler. Even at the age of 4 that kid would wake me up in the middle of the night for no reason at all. That child still wakes up at the crack of dawn and wakes Hailey up and then Hailey (6) wakes me up. Thanks girls.

Liz said...

Well, I must be hard core, am I really the only one here who takes prescription sleep aids? I take ativan, every single night. I used to plan to go off it, but now, it's just so good that my only goal is not to increase my dose. I take an itty bitty one. My mom takes valium every night, so it must run in the family. This is funny, and kind of scary: she actually took valium every 4 hours when she was breastfeeding me!!

For years I had the problems you described, Mrs. Furious: the final pee, the obsession with lip balm (for me it was actually hand cream) and needing to have a full glass of water by the bed. I would wake up several times a night, and if my husband so much as moved the wrong way it was over. He is a snorer too. After my kid was done nursing, I talked to my doctor about going on the sleeping meds. And it's awesome.

I never had trouble falling asleep, just with frequent sleep interruption. I'm still in bed only 6 or 7 hours most nights but am fully asleep for all of them. No night time peeing, and I do wake up when I hear Charlie cry out - but can go back to sleep right away no problem.

I am a firm believer in the good night's sleep rule. It is so important to mental and physical health. Anyway. I hope you are able to figure something out that works for you. The sleep diary is a good idea.

Mrs. Furious said...

As soon as I'm not nursing I'd smoke crack if it got me to sleep all night ;)
Actually before I was pregs/nursing (so 7 years ago) I took muscle relaxants to help sleep as prescribed by my rheumatologist... that was fantastic!
The unisom do the trick for me though and definitely help with the going back to sleep quickly aspect and are safe while nursing.

Liz said...

Yep, the free flowing meds are definitely something that make me afraid I'll never be willing to get pregnant again!!

Kelly O said...

Mrs. F. I can so relate to the fear of not peeing if you wake up. Its a mind-banter - should I get up, and be cold but pee and thus not wake up with a raging full bladder, or just stay warm and think about all this and end up going anyway? Also, what keeps me awake is obsessing over too much crap in my life; too much on my mind, then I call my lover, Excedrin PM. He has really been there for me this year, and I'm happy he is in my life. He really can bring out the sleep in me.

Mrs. Furious said...

Kelly O,
" He really can bring out the sleep in me.
That is hilarious.

Kiki said...

I'm late to the comment pat of this conversation + its late at night, evidence of my lack of sleep!! I have something called Menieres Disease, its a few things wrapped up in a lovely package...tinnitus, vertigo and hearing loss. The tinnitus makes it very hard to fall asleep without noise in the background, my noise of choice being the tv. Add to that my wacky work schedule that makes it hard to settle after working all day....I'm a mess at bedtime.
Oh, I get that chapstick thing completely, but I only apply as I drift off to sleep....love it! Gap Lip stuff is my favorite, especially Juicy Guava, yum!!

Mrs. Furious said...

I am so surprised that the lip balm is such a commonality! Too funny!

I have never heard of Menieres Disease. I'm sorry you have to deal with all of that!

Anonymous said...

What I love about this blog is that every time I read it, I learn that I'm not as odd as I thought that I was and that everyone has their quirks. It is just so hilarious as I feel like I am a combo of all the comments. I am actually quite the sleeper as mrs.f knows from our many childhood sleepovers where I would instantly fall asleep and she would be left alone watching tv or bored on the trundle bed.I know how this annoyed you and the tradition is now carried on by my boyfriend who can't believe that I can go to bed at 8pm with no.problem. But oh boy, when I actually know I must go to bed because I have to wake up early, the crutches come out; yes the. Peeing...sometimes up to 4 times before getting to sleep with the constant battle in my head that I just went and shouldn't go again but ultimately do. Then the bedside must have a glass of water, I must have chapstick, must have moisturized hands and feet...and clean feet after walking the streets of nyc in flats, must have a box of kleenex always just in case my nose might desperately need one in the night, halls are also a frequent must and sometimes I wonder how I have not choked to death in the night andf how it is possible to sleep for hours and wake with a halls still slowly melting away in my chipmunk cheek, white noise is also a must as I grew up with the loudest snoring father in town and spent my teenage years soothed by the sounds of loud radio fuzz (now it is the fanlike sound of an air filter and come summer I will be blasting that window ac unit). And so my friends, the sleep weirdnesses live on for us all. Glad I'm not alone. By the way, I forgot to mention the unknown animals that make scratching noises in our attic. Enough to drive me insane. Did I mention that a few months ago I also adopted a fleece blanket that must be wrapped around my head to sleep now? I'm such a wacko.

Mrs. Furious said...

"Did I mention that a few months ago I also adopted a fleece blanket that must be wrapped around my head to sleep now?"

emmyjw said...

LOL,I so do that bathroom thing!Do I really have to go? Should I go, should I wait? I also get up to check that lights are off, things are unplugged, doors are locked, things are ready for the next day etc.... I also woke during the night before kids and have never been a great sleeper. I also need complete darkness and the TV on downstairs drives me bonkers. Last night when I got up to go to the bathroom, I stood there and debated with myself if I should get a drink of water for my thirst because then I would probably have to get up for the bathroom again.

Mrs. Furious said...

"I stood there and debated with myself if I should get a drink of water for my thirst because then I would probably have to get up for the bathroom again"
I do the same thing!

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