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in which the author expires from lack of sleep

April 24, 2009

I haven’t written in a very long time, so long that I’d almost forgotten what it was like to blog. There is a simple explanation for my silence: The common cold. Only this cold shouldn’t qualify as “common” in my book because I’ve never had anything like it.

It started with a sore throat about 11 days ago, then progressed to excessive sneezing, sinus congestion, low-grade fever and chills. Ear aches and coughing fits have come intermittenly.

But the major consequence of this not-so-common cold is MIND-NUMBING INSOMNIA. For some reason, the head-cold-that-won’t-die eliminates my ability to sleep for more than three hours at a time, regardless of how many Tylenol PM caplets I toss down my throat before bedtime.

It’s been 11 days and I haven’t slept more than four total hours in a single 24-hour period. I’m surprised I’m not hallucinating Jesus by now.

“But Sam,” you say, “lots of people sleep only a few hours each night and they do fine. Why are you being such a baby?”

I get that some people don’t need much sleep to function, but I’m not one of those people. I require a solid seven hours in order to behave remotely like a human, and I would prefer nine hours if they are available. I’m usually in bed reading before 9 p.m., asleep by 10, and rarely up before 5 a.m.

I guess I’m so congested that I can’t breathe in my sleep, so my body starts yelling WAKE UP BEFORE YOU DIE.

It is now 4 a.m. in sunny Texas and I’ve been up since one. I’ve cleaned the kitchen, dusted the bookshelves, rearranged our DVD collection and guzzled about three bottles of Robitussen. The weird thing is I don’t feel all that terrible right now (other than having to breathe through my mouth), but I instinctively know sleep isn’t an option.

What the hell? Do you have trouble sleeping when you’re sick? Does it make you want to check yourself into the hospital just so they’ll give you the good drugs?

Maybe I’m just a baby, but I need my sleep. Right now, I’d sell my entire book collection for a solid 12 hours of uninterrupted shut-eye.

Anyway, I’ve fallen drastically behind on just about every project in my life. My manuscript hasn’t been touched in days and I’m starting to go through withdrawal. The problem is looking at the computer screen makes my eyes hurt and the pressure in my sinuses increase, so I’ve been avoiding it like the plague.

Maybe today it will finally end. One can hope.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. April 24, 2009 10:45 am

    Wow, I can’t say I’ve ever been through anything like that. Have you been to the doctor? Colds don’t drag on this long. I’d say ditch the Robitussin, most over-the-counter crap makes whatever you’re sick with last longer (no joke, this came out a couple years ago). See if you can find some teas from a company called Traditional Medicinals, specificially the Gypsy Cold Care, and Breathe Easy (I get it at Safeway here, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find). I’ve recommended it to many people who now swear by it, and have introduced it to their own family members. Maybe even some Detox tea to flush all that Robitussin and Tylenol PM out. BTW, Simply Sleep is the sleep aid in Tylenol PM, without the ibuprofin if you don’t need both.

    I’m like you, I need 8 hours of shut-eye to feel human. Ramp up the Vit. C, get out in the sun and get some Vit. D. Your whole system is probably out of whack from all this.

  2. Sam Tamlyn permalink*
    April 24, 2009 12:06 pm

    Thanks DD. I haven’t been to the doctor (I avoid them if I can) but if I’m not totally better by Monday I’m going to make an appointment. I found Traditional Medicinals at Whole Foods today–thanks! I picked up the Throat Coat and Breathe Easy brands, and it even felt good to inhale the steam before it cooled enough to drink. I was so raw that I could hardly swallow orange juice.

  3. April 24, 2009 12:52 pm

    I hear ya, I’m not big on doctors myself until I get to the point where nothing I do helps or I know it’s not something that will go away on its own. That Throat Coat is amazing stuff, so much better than Sucrets! Be sure to let the teas steep long enough to really get the full benefits of the herbs.

    Sure hope you can get some sleep, that’d be the best thing.

    • May 14, 2017 10:02 pm

      Vi är redan idag utsatta för en massinvasion… Och vadÃ¥ särintresse? Är det även ett särintresse att ha en he¤f¶ÃrsÃmkring? Gissar att reinfeldt inte har en sÃ¥n dÃ¥..

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