GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.Belated good morning GUSers but this summer my wife and I are practicing the art of sleeping in and I'm getting to be quite the artist.
And that hasn't always been the case. Ever since I was permanently injured in an industrial accident in 1995 and have suffered chronic pain ever since getting a good night's sleep has been increasingly harder to come by. First I have trouble betting to sleep, then I have trouble stay asleep, and ironically it seems to me on the nights I do sleep soundly the trade off is intense pain in my neck and shoulders when I do wake up because I didn't change positions often enough during the night.
Over the years I've tried everything I can think of to try and combat my war with sleep, and have yet to find anything that works for any length of time. I started out with the over the counter sleep aids and first discovered they left me feeling drug out and groggy the next morning and into the next day. But worse, none of them, and I think I tried them all, work for very long before they would stop helping me get to sleep.
I was also in pain management for a year or so. That was the real drugs. Hydrocodone, muscle relaxers, and Ambien. And you bet those worked for awhile. All except the Ambien for some reason. Yes it would help me get to sleep but only for about four hours. And since I wasn't supposed to even take and Ambien every night taking two of them really seemed out of line. Plus, if I did take two of them during the night they also made me feel groggy and drug out the next morning. Ultimately though I found that being a Hydrocodone addict wasn't all it was cracked up to be. In fact I found I had to keep taking higher and higher doses and instead of just killing the pain they were also making me feel sick.
So I left "Pain management" and went back to fighting sleeplessness on my own with things like herbal tea, Tylenol PM (hate that groggy feeling) Melatonin (beyond groggy the next day) and just going without sleep which also tended to just ruin the next day. All of it helped a little bit but it also set up this constant battle where I began to dread each night and the next morning. And sometimes just the fight or the thought would keep me awake.
But lately, especially this summer, and with my wife's help, I've been trying a new approach. First my wife read an article about how vitamins and a very small dose of Melatonin can help people sleep. I didn't believe it at first but I have to admit taking only a small piece of a Melatonin, vitamin D, and Magnesium before I go to bed does seem to help me get to sleep and maybe even stay asleep.
Then on the nights the pain does wake me up I combat it by alternating between laying down on the couch and my recliner chair. Alternating like that changes the pressure points and eases the pain which helps me get back to sleep.
The biggest change, however, is this summer both my wife and I are also now practicing the art of sleeping in and it seems to make perfect sense. I'm retired and she gets the summer off from work so we stopped even setting an alarm clock. Also its only the two of us so we are usually separated in the morning and can stay that way. In other words if I'm asleep in the living room when my wife gets up she can get her morning coffee and relax in the bedroom without waking me up. And the same goes for me if I happen to wake up first.
Its created this situation where we ease into waking up in the morning and don't get up and get moving until we actually feel like it. And while even in my own mind that seems kind of lazy and lackadaisical I have to admit I'm sure feeling a lot better on a lot more days and that sure seems worth it.
Even though as you can see it might make some of my diaries less than prompt in the morning. Sorry about that. But that's what is working for me.
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