Sleep Deprived, Even at High School

August 18, 2012

The experiment began in January.  It has epically failed.  I tried to become a diurnal, but have come up short…by countless hours and dark circles surrounding my bloodshot eyes.  Yes, I am waking up earlier on school days.  Yes, I am getting to work on time.  Yes, I am getting more done in the morning.  But this doesn’t negate my infinite power burst just after 4 in the afternoon, causing me to stay working at school until seven. 

I am now teaching at a high school.  I have to learn a new curriculum.  New staff.  New demographic.  But I still desperately fight going to sleep at a decent time.  Why are others able to function on so much less sleep than I am?  Why can others go to events on the weekends and  not feel as if they are being ripped off of time they could spend sleeping in, laying on the couch, catching up on “Trueblood,” “The Daily Show,” and “White Collar”?  How do people maintain a social life AND get enough sleep? 

I am mentally, emotionally, intellectually, and physically exhausted from my first two weeks teaching at high school, and yet, I feel compelled to write this blog rather than go to sleep.  I’ve had two glasses of wine and two Clonozopams, and I am still motivated to stay up past midnight.  In my current mindset, I am thinking, “suck it diurnals.”  I plan on sleeping until at least 2 pm, and watching TV all day.  Damn, aren’t I the intellectual?



6 Responses to “Sleep Deprived, Even at High School”

  1. Christine Says:

    I use to be able to stay up to the wee hours of the morn, but after rotations, i’m now on old ppl time- my body naturally falls asleep once it hits 11-11:30pm. I can’t even tell you how many nights I’ve been able to stay up pass midnight, even if I WANT to- just ask Kirsten, who pokes at me for being “old” (even though she’s the older one lol). I could be in the middle of watching a movie (as Kirs and I were a while back, watching Trekkies) and yet when it hit 11, I was falling asleep. I WANTED to stay up and watch to the end, but I couldn’t stay up. I wasn’t mentally tired, but physically my body wouldn’t let me. I’ve had to adjust so much on rotations that my body just accepts that as my schedule now. And I didn’t have a choice- going from 6:30am start shifts one week to graveyard the next, i had to learn how to adjust my sleep schedule, which meant going to bed earlier and earlier. You have trouble going to bed at a normal time, imagine how hard it is to go to bed at 9:30 or 10pm…in the middle of spring.

    So long rambling made short- your body can adjust and hopefully over time you’ll be able to adjust to a sleeping schedule. However, a few other tips to keep in in mind:
    a) have you heard of sleep hygiene and have you looked over yours?
    b) lady, you know that wine isn’t going to touch you
    c) you do know that you clonazepam won’t help you fall asleep or maintain sleep right? sure, drowsiness is a side effect, but you’ve been on it chronically so you’ve most definitely developed a tolerance. Speaking of which, there’s always the risk of developing a tolerance when being on a benzo long term; however, if it’s been helping w/the nightmares, then that’s fine. Either way, clonazepam isn’t indicated for the onset or maintenance of sleep.
    d) TWO clonazepams….let alone meds + wine?! your. liver. not. happy. -___-
    e) have you talked to your physician about this? it might help to have a convo about this plan to change your sleeping habits and there may be something he/she can help with. also, some times medications can interfere w/sleep.

    k, that’s my 2 cents.

  2. Christine Says:

    a) why is the font so tiny for comments?
    b) a little something i found while looking up info: “Psychophysiological insomnia is typically associated with and facilitated by learned sleep-preventing behaviors. Patients with psychophysiological insomnia find it difficult to relax and have increasing mental content (ie, “racing thoughts”) when they try to fall asleep. They frequently focus on their inability to fall asleep and start to worry, resulting in greater inability to fall asleep and more anxiety. Patients may focus on the perceived negative impact of lack of sleep on their ability to perform the next day. The poor sleep, intrusive thoughts, and worry can then become associated with the bedroom and sleep setting to produce a chronic pattern of poor sleep and associated consequences. As a result, some patients sleep better away from home because they are away from the factors that help to maintain their insomnia.” you?

    • dinabot Says:

      Yes, the font is small. Hmm. The issues isn’t that I can’t fall asleep. I can fall asleep anywhere, anytime. My issue is not wanting to go to sleep. I feel like I’m missing out if I go to bed early. I’m like an 8-year-old who keeps saying, “Five more minutes mom!” Oh, and my doctor just made a radical suggestion for readjusting my clock. Next blog perhaps?

  3. Christine Says:

    oh. well…rant kinda useless? yes next blog please!

    • dinabot Says:

      Not a useless rant, I appreciate the comments. I’m just going to experiment with different behavioral plans rather than adjust medications right now. But keep the drugs coming when I’m in the home. For now, I’m going to try to get into a routine which will include exercise once these triple digit temperatures cease. I think that will help. I’m also considering ceasing all social interaction until I can catch up on my work and feel like a person again. I don’t know. I’ll blog about the new facets of the experiment later.

  4. Christine Says:

    well, most of what you’re talking about is pretty much sleep hygiene. here:

    Sleep only long enough to feel rested and then get out of bed
    Go to bed and get up at the same time every day
    Do not try to force yourself to sleep. If you can’t sleep, get out of bed and try again later.
    Have coffee, tea, and other foods that have caffeine only in the morning
    Avoid alcohol in the late afternoon, evening, and bedtime
    Avoid smoking, especially in the evening
    Keep your bedroom dark, cool, quiet, and free of reminders of work or other things that cause you stress
    Solve problems you have before you go to bed
    Exercise several days a week, but not right before bed

    does ceasing all social interaction include no fb? =(

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