Monday, September 13, 2010

But I'm not seeing things

I have trouble sleeping.  I might have mentioned this a time or two before.  And the other night at my sister's, a bunch of us got to talking about our sleep issues.  By us I mean 3 siblings, Beve, friend J and I.  Other than BB, all of us are old enough that we either can't fall asleep or can't stay asleep.  And a few of us, or our spouses, have made the acquaintance of the nice little white sleep-aid called Ambien.

My doctor prescribed this for me a couple of years ago when my insomnia was so bad that I'd go several nights a week with almost no sleep at all.  I finally went to the doctor and he suggested this tiny pill might help me out. And it worked like magic.  LIKE MAGIC. I was completely, utterly rested for the first time in weeks.  And thrilled to be so. I took one that night as well, and woke up as if only a moment had passed. But a few days later, when I opened my journal, I saw some scribbled sentences in an approximation of my handwriting.  Sentences I had absolutely NO memory of writing, not even the faintest, drifting-off-to-sleep kind of memories I sometimes have when I really should put down my book but just want to read one more page.  Those scribbled, incomprehensible sentences scared me.  I hate the idea of being so deeply drugged that I don't remember things.  It's why I don't like too much alcohol.  I hate not knowing what's going on.  Being out of control, if that makes sense.  However, I did need to sleep, so I cut those tiny pills in half, and that was enough to get me through that difficult season.

Fast-forward to this August.  I dreaded the insomnia that might come with the stress beside my mother's bed, and after her death.  So I called the doctor again and got another prescription for those tiny white pills.  And Ambien, cut in half, did the job again.  No matter what else was going on, at least I was sleeping.

Saturday night, then, after a long day of memorial service, reception, family gathering, visiting, I took my regular pills, that little one included, took my evening shower and went down to what my farmer brother-in-law is now calling, "Carolyn's bedroom."  Got into bed, read a while, with Beve beside me.  At some point, though I don't know what time it was, son J came in to speak to us.

Yesterday, on the way home, J said, "Mom, do you remember what you said to me last night?"
I shook my head, then suddenly thought, 'oh crap, I think I do!'  And J confirmed it:
I had very seriously looked at J standing in the door of that bedroom and asked, "How can you talk with two mouths? And you have two--no, wait, THREE--eyes!"

I wonder if those little pills can be cut into fourths?

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