I woke up with a jolt of adrenaline. More so because I knew my dad was coming by to pick me and my daughter up at 10am. When I woke up, I realized I wasn't sure if the alarm had been set by my husband or not. I heard the garbage trucks outside and normally they come later, so then I thought I had slept in. All was fine and I was up at the perfect time. But now my heart was racing and I felt "off". I had a quick breakfast, got my daughter on track so that she would be ready on time, and then had time for a quick, hot shower to try to "free my mind" a bit. No such luck. The entire morning I felt jangled. The cold wasn't helping as I was tired from the coughing. But I was also tired from the lack of sleep. These past 2 weeks have been nothing but miserable when it comes to sleep. When I first get into bed, things seem good. I feel tired, and I feel like I can sleep. But minutes later I feel it begin. A sort of restless feeling. My heart begins to beat harder and my body starts to twitch. I try to visualize myself sitting on a rock. I am surrounded by water and flowers and the sun shines on me. I am warm and calm. I can hear birds chirping and the butterflies fly so closely that I can feel the wind created by their wings. This is my "go to" place. It doesn't always work, but when it does it's wonderful. This past week it hasn't helped once. But again, the anxiety I have since being on (and coming off of) the Benzos is just so much more intense, that my hope is that once I am better I will be able to use this technique with no issues. My body is working hard to heal and with that comes these horrible moments of fear.
Imagining myself here...
...but instead I feel like I'm here
Tonight is one of those nights. I didn't even try to go to my bed with my husband. Instead I came out to the family room and made a bed on the sofa. Now with the laptop of my lap, I try to "type away" my bed time fears. So far it's not working...at all. My breathing is heavy and my stomach keeps turning. I have a lot of lower intestinal pain tonight. This has been a common withdrawal side effect and it's one I wish would go. It's as though my intestines and surrounding organs are bruised and sore. It's an unsettling physical feeling that makes me feel mentally/emotionally vulnerable. I also have a heavy feeling in my chest and stomach. Almost alien-like. It feels like I need to keep stretching so that the "alien" doesn't try to push through my body.
I am deliriously tired now. I just want to sleep but I know if I attempt to shut my eyes I will spiral downwards into a night of panic...I can feel it. So instead I type on my blog in hopes that this feeling will pass and soon I will be able to turn out the lights and rest my eyes and body.
I hate these pills. I hate what they've done to me. I try to remain positive through it all, but on a night like tonight I just feel angry and extremely frustrated. I want to be in bed with my husband. It has been over 2 years since I was able to go to bed feeling relaxed. Pre-benzos, I was able to sneak off to bed, read a good book and then drift off into dreamland before my husband ever got under the covers himself. And I remained asleep all night. Then I went on the benzos, and at first it was fine, but quickly I became fearful of bedtime. I began having these night time attacks that only created more fear. I miss going to bed peacefully. I miss it SO much. For 2+ years I have felt terrified of bed.
And now on the sofa I don't really feel any better...except I can cry and not wake my husband up. I know it will pass, but I feel a wave of panic when I wonder how long it will last before I can sleep. I need some solid sleep. Too many nights in a row have been filled with panic and broken sleep. I am beyond frustrated. I know many begin to feel better after 6 months when healing from Benzos, but what if I'm not one of those. What if I end up being one of "those" who take 2+ years to fully heal? Irrational fears consume me...will I ever get better? Will my husband finally "have enough"? He is so outgoing and full of life and energy. Do I bring him down? I know he'll be upset reading this in my blog, but it's how I feel. I know he loves me (in fact, I know he adores me). But how long can one person remain patient. Do I hold him back? Does he miss out on things because "I'm not up to it?" Are my friends rolling their eyes at this point? Do they begin to wonder if I'm just a hypochondriac? All of these questions race through my head on a night like tonight.
I will go now and try to rest. I am thankful for this blog on a night like tonight because it has given me a place to vent. Venting is healthy. Tomorrow is a new day and I may feel much more positive...but if not, that's okay too. I am learning to be more kind to myself. I am far from perfect and it's okay to feel sorry for myself once in awhile. As long as I don't carry those feelings into the day, then I'm okay with it. Tonight I question whether I will get better...the "what ifs" are out in full force. I hope to sleep and wake up in the morning thinking "I will".