Giving up (14Jun17)

Dispatch
Night Shift, 0028L

As far back as November of 2015, I’ve struggled like no one ever has to stay awake during the day and to fall asleep at night. My energy levels would plummet at the most inconvenient times and I’d find myself limping along with heavy eyes to the point where I can’t make it up to my room before I’d collapse on the couches in the day-room. The spikes of fatigue is what causes me the most hurt; periodically, I’d feel just fine after a good 8-10 hours of sleep the evening before, and then crash into a state of utter sloth, which is especially terrible during shift. When I do find rest, it is hardly what I would call restful unless I knew that I had a free day after I woke up. In the event that I would have work, a few things would normally happen. I’d immediately feel a sense of fear and slight panic… Being too afraid of oversleeping once again (even if I tried getting rest right after work, giving me a total of about 12 hours or so), I’d battle with myself on whether or not I should sleep uncomfortably on purpose to avoid deep sleep, or take the risk of sleeping under covers and resting as light as possible. Deep sleep always gets me into trouble.

It did not matter which path I chose, because normally the conflict within would be so great, that I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep anyway. I really do fear sleeping past my alarms because I’ve done it so much already. I’d much rather skip getting rest for that day that I’ve felt extremely nervous about sleeping for, than to risk getting a call from someone at work telling me that I fucked up once again. I hate thinking that I’ve maintained a good-enough sleep pattern to where I can comfortably rest, just to find that I’ve slept past the first hour of work.

This has been the past nearly 2 years here at Ramstein AB for me. Being brought out of medical feeling like a dunce, being told the same thing after each of my appointments, “no loud music or watching tv at least an hour before you plan on heading off to bed”… The same damn sheets of paper I have to sign as a result of another failed attempt to conquer whatever sort of sleeping problem I do seem to have… It’s a circle of unfortunate events, and I can’t seem to escape the loop. I’ve known the repetitive trend for a long time, as I had mentioned before, but what I don’t know is the solution that will allow me to stay out of trouble at work and have peace of mind about getting the rest I actually need. Melatonin only promotes a deeper sleep, which is something I want to avoid altogether. Nothing I’ve done so far is absolutely guaranteed to work for me.

Visiting the medical office has never yielded me any productive results. I’d schedule an appointment, attend, then be handed the same sheet of paper. It says the same damned thing. “Don’t stare at a screen for too long, don’t eat a heavy dinner, don’t drink too much alcohol or anything related to these things before going to sleep.” No duh, Sherlock.

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