Tuesday, February 03, 2009

the fellowship of suffering

I cannot remember the last time I had a full night's rest.

I suffer from periodic bouts of sleeplessness, but this last round has about worn me down. My typical night goes like this:

Go to bed between 9:30 and 10. Usually fall asleep in 20-30 minutes.

Wake up somewhere between 12:00 and 2:00 a.m.

Get up and take herbs, supplements, anything besides ambien to help me get back to sleep

After 1 to 2 hours of trying unsuccessfully to force myself back into slumberland, I cave in and pop the little blue pill.

And for the next 4 to 6 hours, I enjoy a drug-induced coma.

I get up, feeling spaced-out and exhausted, and drag myself through another day.

I think insomnia is where all insanity begins . . .

I've had words with the Lord about this. It just doesn't seem fair that He expects me to deal with the responsibilities and demands of the day when I cannot rest at night. All He ever says to me is that His grace is sufficient. After all, insomnia hasn't killed me yet (although driving while sleep-deprived can be more dangerous than driving under the influence of alcohol, so I pray for an extra measure of grace when I must drive after a sleepless night).

Last night, when I awoke at midnight, I knew immediately that I was up for the long haul. I went through my usual routine of taking natural sleep remedies. But I had a lot on my mind, and the longer I lay in bed, the more worked up I got. About 1:15, I threw in the towel and swallowed a sleeping pill. It usually takes about 20 minutes to kick in, so I opened my laptop and checked Facebook.

I read my messages and then noticed that two of my younger friends were on live chat. Surprised I wasn't the only one up at that ungodly hour, I asked them both why they weren't snug in their beds.
To make a long story short, they both had a lot on their minds, too. They chatted about their struggles, I shared a bit of mine, we prayed for each other and then all (hopefully) went to bed.

It was oddly comforting to find myself in the sleep-deprived fellowship of suffering last night.
Maybe I should start a group for Facebook insomniacs . . . .


Jackie said...

But could FB actually be creating them?? lol. Seriously though, I am sorry about your lack of sleep. I cannot have any caffeine (nada) or else I have to take something. And just like you, I hate that! I know you have struggled for a long time and have done all you can to eliminate triggers. I was sleep deprived when the kids were babies and I was miserable. I will be praying for you friend. Big Hugs, Jax

P.S. I'm not dissing FB. I'm on too. :O)

Gary said...

Shawn, reading your post I thought about On His Blindness by John Milton. Do you know this incredible poem? It's so like your own story:

When I consider how my light is spent
E’re half my days, in this dark world and wide
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker and present
My true account, lest He, returning, chide,
“Doth God exact day labor, light denied?”
I fondly ask. But patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies, “God doth not need
Either man’s works or His own gifts. Who best
Bear His mild yoke, they serve Him best. His state
Is kingly. Thousands at His bidding speed
And post o’er land and ocean without rest.
They also serve who only stand and wait.”

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