I sit here and try to make sense of last night. The bags under my eyes whisper little taunts, validating what seemed to be a spontaneous bout of my old friend, insomnia. Once a chronic insomniac, it’s been months since I’ve had a problem falling asleep. Until last night, that is. I don’t understand it. I took my pills, which typically lull me right off into dreamland. I avoided caffeine and heavy mental stimulation. Yet, I tossed and turned for hours, my brain wide awake. I realize to some it may appear that I’m overreacting. Maybe I am. Maybe it was an isolated incident. But after years of suffering from sleepless nights, I tend to take these matters seriously for caution of pattern development.
As I ponder some more, I get my “aha!” moment. I brought this on myself via the power of suggestion! You see, I attend a Bipolar support group and at last night’s meeting, I may have overstepped my confidence on slumber ability while jabbering on at a new group member, who is struggling with her first round of insomnia. Eager to help a newcomer and probably even more eager to spread some self-proclaimed mental wisdom, I word-vomited a bunch of sleep advice, including scientific REM sleep CD’s, avoiding blue light electronics, and of course faithfully taking your medication. Like a true recovering insomniac, I bragged about my own meds and how I peacefully drift into a perfect sleep every night. Every night until now that is. Clearly I spoke too soon.
I realize this may sound like a silly superstition. It’s not that I necessarily think I jinxed myself, but I did spend a lot of mental energy thinking about it, thus it had to have been fresh on the brain just a few hours prior to bedtime. Did I bring it on myself or is this purely coincidental? I don’t know for sure. But I will most definitely keep track of my sleep patterns for the next few days in case any adjustments need to be made. In the meantime, I will still be a welcome wagon for the newly diagnosed, but I might tone down the advice-giving a little bit.