Hey, how are you? I’m doing fine this week. I feel so much better. My mind is pretty clear, I have plans for my life and my daughter’s report card was great. Oh and my almost 20 month old granddaughter went pee in the potty for the first time today! The only problem I’m having is sleeping. Too much. I could sleep all day and have done it a couple of times.
Oh the dreams I have at night (or early morning). I think I don’t want to wake up because I don’t want to leave the dreams I’m in. They’re so vivid now, so real. Sometimes I’m not sure if something happened while sleeping or awake. I’ve woken myself up yelling for my son to “come back here!!” like he was 2 years old. The colours and patterns and stories make me want to sleep forever.
Most of them are really great dreams. I told Dr. G about one that seemed almost precognitive. I dreamt about my dream house and there were many new rooms in it. Some of them had very narrow hallways that curved to the right before you enter the room. Well, at my first appointment with the Intake Worker at the Canadian Mental Health Association, she led me to a door and immediately I had a strong sense of deja vu. Sure enough, after entering, the wall curved to the right forming a narrow hallway and then we entered the open space of the office.
I dream a lot of guilt dreams. I hate those dreams.
I dreamt of apples last night. Hundreds of them. I filled my basket with them and I could smell them too. I think it had to do with visiting with my son and daughter-in-law and smelling sample after sample of the products she’s selling for Scensie. Apparently they use the same wax used on apples at the grocery stores. No wonder. None of my favourites scents I picked smelled like apples though. Hmm. Maybe I have scurvy?
I asked Dr. G about my increase and intensity of my dreaming at our last appointment. He told me that people who have bipolar have a very active mind so when we go to sleep the brain just keeps going. When I told him about how much I was actually sleeping he brought up that nasty word…
Back in 2006 (?) I was diagnosed with the dreaded narcolepsy. I had all the symptoms including falling asleep at inappropriate times, like during one on one conversations, going through stop signs with no memory of doing it until I “woke up”. Forget driving on the highway. I would get my 8 hours sleep no problem and more sometimes but the symptoms got worse and it was taking forever to get into the sleep clinic for an assessment. My GP had no choice but to diagnose me with that bad word until I could get to the clinic. This meant suspending my driver’s license for a year! A YEAR!
I called the clinic every week, looking for cancellations. I was sooooo tired it was unbelievable. I was on amphetamines that drove my body crazy with the shakes and the frustration of having eyes that wanted to close and dream but were wide open and dried out like 2 sand-filled apricots. I couldn’t sleep at night. I was awake all the time. I was going on manic mode constantly.
I missed my dreams.
Finally they moved up my appointment. Probably realizing my desperation and learning of my newly officially diagnosed bipolar disorder did the trick. And it would make me stop phoning them.
Hi Sara! It’s Marie again! Hi Marie. Oh I’m so sorry there’s nothing this week. How are you doing my dear?
I was to go to the appointment after being awake for several hours and on no medication. I got a ride there and looked forward to resolving this and 4 hours of sleep. It was all so fascinating. I love things to do with the brain and how it works.
I was hooked up to many, many electrodes and wires to monitors, wearing a paper gown. While they were hooking me up, the techs had to keep prodding me to wake up. I kept falling asleep while sitting there in spite of all the activity around me.
It was a great sleep. I dreamed and dreamed.
When I was done the doctor asked to see me. He had just one question for me. He wondered if I started dreaming as soon as I go to sleep. I assured him I did and I knew what I dreamt and everything. He laughed and said I was in a dream state before the tech even left the room and my eyes had just closed. He was astounded as that’s pretty rare. He told me he would have the results for me in a week.
I saw him again and he played me a video of me sleeping where I snored obnoxiously or, as my friend Corrie says, unholy. I was very embarrassed. He said I did not have narcolepsy, that is to say I had the symptoms of it but they were being caused by sleep apnea. I was to be fitted for an appliance for my mouth to keep my airway open while I slept. That didn’t work out very well so I was switched to a CPAP machine which I had to wait for from Manitoba Health.
In the meantime I still couldn’t drive and I was so tired I was finding it harder to work. The call came that my CPAP was waiting for me after only 2 weeks. It was the happiest day of my sleeping life.
Now I sleep with my CPAP every night. Dr. G really doesn’t believe I have narcolepsy, thank goodness. I think he was just throwing it out there to scare me. I’m going to see a dietician to address some of this so hopefully things will be better in the sleep department.
Ciao for now!