Sleepless nights

Do you know those days or sometimes even weeks when it’s so hard to fall asleep? Or when you wake up in the middle of the night and you can’t fall back to sleep anymore? Paul and I always alternate. When I’m restless and can’t sleep, he comfortably snores his head off next to me, and sometimes it’s the other way around. (Yes people, I snore too!!) Fortunately over the years, you start to find the snoring endearing. When you see that person lying next to you, mouth open, drool running down on the side of the mouth, and all you can think is: Oh, I love him so much!’ Haha, funny how love works, right!

Back to the sleepless nights. You’re tired, ready to go to sleep, you close your eyes, and NOTHING! Even with your eyes closed, you’re still awake. What to do now? Okay, if I keep my eyes closed, I must fall asleep at one point, right? Nope! After 30 – 45 minutes I still can’t sleep. Hmm, okay maybe I should lie on the couch. One hour later, I’m still not asleep. Grrrrr!!! Let’s try and stare at my phone. Maybe that helps. Worst idea ever! Let me tell you right now, looking at a computer screen before you go to sleep or when you are trying to fall asleep is not a good idea. Eventually I did fall asleep. But before that happened, I tried so many things: I tried to switch off my brain, but that didn’t work. I tried counting sheep, counting in general, thinking of a nice place, reading, drinking milk, square breathing, and much more, but nothing worked.

Let’s go over my day. What happened today, what did I do differently? I had a coffee in the morning, one with lunch and one after dinner. Could that be it? Sounds logical. Over the next couple of days I tried to skip the last coffee, but that didn’t make a difference. Okay, so it’s not the coffee. What could it be? I drank a lot of water, but didn’t have to go to the bathroom during the night, so that wasn’t it either. My stomach wasn’t feeling upset, I didn’t drink any alcohol. So technically I could rule out anything food or drink related.

Then I noticed my jaws hurt. Why was that? And while thinking about it, I could feel that I was clenching my jaw, and I know I do that when I feel stressed. What was I stressed about? I feel okay, nothing comes to mind straight away.

But what you forget sometimes is that it can be a build up. It doesn’t necessarily reflect the day before, but the days, weeks or even months before that. And we did have our fair share of stress.  Well at least I knew what the reason was, but how can I avoid this from affecting my sleep? TALKING about it! Even though I always think I’m this open book, I do not share my real feelings very easily. So when talking about what I was worried about with Paul and even my mom, it felt like a heavy weight was lifted off my shoulder. Asking for people to listen to you or even help you, is a good thing. So the first thing I do now when I feel stressed, is to talk about it.

What do you do when you can’t sleep? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

2 thoughts on “Sleepless nights

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