Sleepless in St.Martin

I’ve been here before, that old familiar feeling. Nothing keeping me awake apart from myself.

Since I started back on Anti-Depressants, the side effects have begun to kick in. My appetite is still somewhat diminished, which is disconcerting because I’ve always enjoyed food. But when it’s presented in front of me, I feel I need to eat it, not because of hunger more out of necessity. But the main side effect that has always kicked me when I’m down, is sleep. Or lack there of.

I work hard, I try to do a lot of sport, other commitments permitting of course. Thus I should be tired. I can usually just decide, ‘right, that’s enough, sleep now’, and within 10 minutes or so, I’m out for the count, for the night. But not now, it’s as if my sleep cycle has been turned upside down. I feel physically tired, but my mind seems to have other plans. I’m not sat thinking about things either, I’m just not able to fall asleep.

At the moment, I’m tending to just, lie there. This leaves me exhausted the next day, and exhaustion can only last so long surely before I give in? Not in my case. I have been surviving on a few hours sleep, and the sleep that I have had has been interrupted, and again taking a long time to drop back off to sleep. So from having so very little sleep over the course of a few days, with only minimal food inside me, I become grouchy and irritable.

Irritability is one of the most difficult aspects for me to control. One of the main signs of a relapse into depression for me, is irritability. So knowing this, has made me seek the help I need. But then when the help causes further irritability, where does one turn? I feel irritable, I’m down. I don’t sleep, I feel irritable. So I can become a lot shorter with people, snap something at someone, which in turn then makes me feel worse because I’m not a fan of upsetting others. It’s a vicious circle.

I know that this will pass once the medication builds up in my system, but until then I find myself having to bite my tongue or taking a brief moment to gather my thoughts and not react as I would usually. This is a story that has plagued me over the years, and as I have alluded to earlier, has ruined parts of my life.

I know that this is a long road that I need amble down again, but the support that I’m receiving from all around me makes everything seem a lot rosier. I’m still taking one day at a time, and sometimes I’m still guilty of throwing a happy face on a sad day, but it’s just one of my ways of coping. If there are other people reading this, that are worried about having “that” conversation, and opening up about how much they are struggling, I would encourage anyone to speak out. Because suffering in silence does not make you a better person. It will hurt you twice as much in the long run.

Depression is a terrible illness, it can strike you down at any time. But taking these early steps I think will help me in the long term. I am so determined not to let this drag me back to where I have been before, it’s not pleasant. I won’t let it happen.

If you aren’t sure what it feels like to be depressed, then I would suggest giving this video a watch. It puts words to very difficult emotions, and sums up a lot of what I’m going through.


One thought on “Sleepless in St.Martin

  1. Michael

    Jo sorry to hear that things not going so well. I might suggest that sleep is not just about being physically tired or even mentally tired more a place that you seem to be stumbling across

    Just a suggestion maybe you need to plan your journey towards sleep. Like all journeys you can get there by many roads however having struggled along a similar path I might suggest a few things that could help

    Reduce caffeine intake nothing after 5 pm do not eat evening meal after 8 pm both afect sleep pattern

    go to bed early but not to sleep just to rest

    reduce direct light pollution in an evening in particular use of kindle ipad and phone

    In bed read,listen to music try to be relaxed and unwind if sleep comes fine if not you will be rested win win I do not know if you ever practice meditation but there are some really good relaxation exercises that can send you that might also help

    As to the irritability try improving your blood sugar hot chocholate or cocco can help alcohol although can help generally reduces blood sugar and exacerbates your irritability you know where I am if you need or want to chat my friend


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