Tuesday, March 29, 2022


I've had trouble sleeping for almost twenty-five years now. 

It started when Gloria and I moved in together. We only had a twin bed, and she was a very active sleeper. I'd never spent the night with someone consistently, so I very quickly developed issues. 

Oh, and her cat, who liked to jump on the bed at 5 a.m. and ask for breakfast. Gloria slept very heavily, so I would get up every morning and feed the cat (who, to be fair, was very polite after that). 

I started taking melatonin at some point.

At some point after that, my doctor prescribed Ambien. I was concerned about possible addictive effects, so I only took it two nights a week. I generally slept very well on it, too, but Ambien is powerful in strange ways, and I was less and less comfortable with it over time. 

Then we moved to Michigan (Canada). My new doctor recommended I stop taking Ambien and take Trazadone, which was much milder and really didn't cause any issues over time. 

That sounded great, really, but I didn't sleep nearly as well. 

The other problem with Melatonin and Trazadone was that I always woke up sluggish in the morning. Every single day, I felt heavy for the first half hour, and I didn't like that. 

A couple of years ago, I developed a new complication: I had a hard time turning my brain off. I could go to sleep with no problem, generally, then I'd wake up at 3:30 and my brain would be going a mile a minute. I'd think of ten things I needed to do the next day, and I'd be sending emails to myself at 4 a.m. with lists of tasks. 

After Gloria's accident, this got much worse, because there was suddenly so much more to do. 

A few nights ago, I just decided to stop taking anything. I don't like needing medication to sleep, and it seems like I need to focus on the upstream problems instead of trying to solve it downstream by taking something right before bedtime. 

It could be a disaster. 

However, I know a fair number of you have sleep problems, too, because a ton of people in the 40-60 range do, so if I'm able to get this under control, I'll let you know what I did. Maybe it will help you, too. 

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