Friday, January 4, 2019

Sleep/Stress-A Neverending Cycle 

I wish I could sleep consistently 5-8 hours a night. Unfortunately, that rarely happens for me. 4 hours is a good nights sleep for me, but even then I don’t feel rested when I awaken. 

This is a screenshot of my sleep patterns as recorded by my Fitbit. You can see how little I sleep. Wednesday I slept really well for me.

I am always tired when I go to bed, I should be able to sleep well. Yet, I don’t. Why? Anxiety often keeps my brain busy going over everything and anything that it perceives that I did wrong or others have done to me. It seems no amount of exhaustion,meditation or relaxation can quiet my mind. 

I have taken Trazodone in the past and it put me to sleep, but if I woke up for any reason, I could not get back to sleep. 

I try to reduce stress in my life. Unfortunately, there is always something that can trigger it. Money is one of the biggest triggers. Family is another. As much as I would like to not deal with people who cause anxiety, I can’t disown family. I can only limit my interactions with them. Sometimes that doesn’t help. 

I am a light sleeper so my husband moving or snoring can awaken me. My bladder is another problem, though it’s gotten better since I am on a water pill. Oh and a cat who meows to be fed at 3 am doesn’t help matters. Dogs wanting in bed who whine to get a light on it are spoiled, but what can I do if I want to go back to sleep? Then said dogs hog my pillows or covers and walk on top of me. 

At least the cat will purr when they lay on me. That is the most relaxing sound to me. I guess I need an app for that. 

Lack of sleep is a trigger for many of my Invisible Disabilities. If I don’t sleep I wake up sore and achy. I feel as if I am getting the flu. Sometimes it triggers vertigo, but more often than not I am just lightheaded or dizzy. Which creates more stress, because I am reliant on others. I like being able to do things on my own, but cannot drive when dizzy.

I think losing my independence is probably the most stressful thing that has happened to me. Stress triggers vertigo so it’s a never ending cycle. Though I have been relatively vertigo free since starting the diuretic, I still get the head pressure and lightheadedness associated with vertigo. Which makes me fear an attack is imminent. It’s a vicious cycle.

Then you throw in people who don’t believe that there’s something wrong no matter how you try to explain it. So stressors are everywhere. I continue to try to educate others about my invisible disabilities and other such things as well. Sometimes, something I say helps someone who has been struggling with issues themselves. That makes it worth it to me. 

So why do I let these things stress me? I don’t. It’s something in my brain or genetic make up that causes these things to stress me. Stress contributes to my lack of sleep, the lack of sleep contributes to my anxiety. It’s a vicious cycle that I want to break. 

I will continue to meditate and use relaxation exercises to try to find the inner peace and place where no stress exists. I have done it before and will again. 

I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

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