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I try not to define my years by a theme. I know they’re arbitrary time periods. I know they’re more complex than that. I know persistent themes are more likely to stretch over much more of my life than one year.
Still, knowing all that, I can’t help but feel 2017 is the year of tired.
Some of that tired is entirely literal. Something, probably perimenopause, has been messing with my ability to stay asleep most mornings. Given my nighttime insomnia, that’s meant highly disrupted sleep. Add in thermal dysregulation that falls just short of hot flashes, and I started the year as a zombie. Make that a mentally ill zombie whose coping strategies have long relied on thinking my way through trouble but was now too tired to think.
Trying to treat all this made things worse, at least for a while. In 2017, I tripled the classes of drugs that have pushed me into narcolepsy. A few years ago, I lost a summer to a tricyclic antidepressant that was supposed to help with my migraines. This year, I lost about six months to SNRIs and SSRIs that were supposed to help perimenopause issues, including the worsening mental health. I still have no idea whether any of those drugs did what they were supposed to. I spent too much time napping or in withdrawal to find out.
That made 2017 the year of the sleep study too. Well, the year of the first sleep study, the one that didn’t contain the differential test for narcolepsy. You see, I’m overweight and I’ve been known to snore when I fall asleep somewhere other than my bed and I only experience a full range of narcolepsy symptoms when I’m on a drug that can treat anxiety, so my problem is obviously apnea. Only I don’t have apnea. I do have a pattern of REM sleep that could indicate narcolepsy, though.
So there will be a second sleep study when I’m up for telling the clinic I really don’t want to try a CPAP for my lack of apnea. As it turns out, advocacy is also harder when one is tired, even after one has become thoroughly tired of bullshit.
I did a lot of being tired of bullshit in 2017. Continue reading “A Year of Tired”