The Green-eyed Monster

It’s been a pretty heavy week. So, I am going to close it out with something a little more light-hearted. It’s Friday and I think we all deserve it, right? Good.

There are times that green-eyed monster rears its’ ugly head and I really feel the pangs of jealousy. Given that there are a lot of things I could feel jealous about, you are probably wondering what it could be? Do I wish I walked without a cane? No. I actually think it’s really spiffy. I want to get flames for it or paint them myself. Do I wish I didn’t have one of my chronic illnesses? Well yes, and a resounding no. I think that while my chronic illness has really complicated my life, that I would not be who I am without the experience of it and so no. There’s no wishing I could somehow alter time so I wouldn’t have these issues. While I like the Sci-Fi aspect of it, I am pretty entrenched in who I am and these chronic issues are a part of me now. What does that leave? Sleep! Yes, my friends. I am jealous of sleepers and nappers.

My amazing husband is one of these. He attributes it to being in the military and so he is able to fall asleep in 2.5 seconds, while we’re in the middle of a conversation sometimes (I’m only exaggerating a little bit), and even after he’s taken a nap. Oh, would that I could have such luxuries. Which, on a small tangent, is always something I laugh about when people hear I work from home: “Oh, you are so lucky! You can take a nap whenever you want.” My face shifting to the expressionless emoji because unless I am sick or truly sleep deprived, I don’t nap. And even sometimes when I am sleep deprived or sick, I don’t nap. And when I do nap, I never go to sleep early. Sleep is truly my nemesis. Which is amusing in a lot of ways, because sleep is something we, as chronic pain patients need. It is restorative and helps us heal and here I am, most nights and after implementing many of my own advice, awake at midnight or 1am. Which is not even touching the surface of how long I can stay up, as I have pulled all-nighters, begging for sleep to come and it never does. Now, however, I am on a medicine that does seem to help and those really late nights have been more spread out.


It’s a running joke around my house the difference between my husband’s sleep patterns and mine. He’ll give me a kiss goodnight at 8:30 or 9pm and I chuckle as I watch him go at “Grandpa Hour” and if he asks if I am coming to bed soon, there’s likely to be a sarcastic retort of, “I got sleep three years ago! I’m good.” But the humor aside, I do get serious pangs of jealousy when I can’t sleep and he’s lying there snoring mid-sentence. Generally, it’s pain that keeps me awake. And if it is not out-right pain, it’s not being able to get comfortable because the way I like to sleep hurts too much. So, really, it’s all pain as I think about it now, just sometimes the pain is more in-your-face than other times. Other times still, it’s your garden variety insomnia with a little hint of mania. Something via the bipolar that I think is like a little spice to keep things interesting; keep me guessing how I try to manage it. All the while I stare at my husband while he is sleeping plotting… (just kidding).

Despite how this is all sounding, I do not resent my husband being able to sleep. I am mystified over it sometimes, but I do not resent it. I am glad he can sleep. I am glad one of us is getting the recommended sleep that is advised. In truth, I get a lot done when I can’t sleep. I write a lot and I think about a lot of things I want to write, so I think it is actually a productive insomnia. The only times it is not is when RLS joins the party. Damn RLS is always such a drag at these soirées; doesn’t want to play by the rules. Those are the times I wish I had a hopscotch and the ability, to actually hop, so I could get some energy out of my legs when they act up. I always try to look at the silver lining. Insomnia or painsomnia just means my work hours have been extended and I try to use the time wisely. I know that chances are I will be sleeping earlier the following nights, when the insomnia ends.


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