Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Depression - Sleep or lack of it.

Over these years of my depression we have come to learn that sleep or lack of it plays a huge part in my ability to cope with life.

When I look back at the notes from the early part of my depression, it is lack of sleep, sleeplessness or insomnia that features heavily and this is often the case for most new mothers.

Mini and Maxi went bad sleepers, but I was under the impression that baby's often slept though and this myth was perpetuated by a lot of the "yummy mummy's" in my antenatal classes.  I though that my two were the exception to prove the rule and I was lucky to get 4 hours sleep a night.

It became a self perpetuating problem.  I didn't go to sleep as I know one of them would wake me and I couldn't cope with the anger I felt when I did wake.  I seemed to have become wired differently I woke at the slightest noise either of the boys made, it was like a mummy radar, so what was the point of going to sleep and then worst of all when I had the opportunity, when MadDad was sleeping in with them, well that's when insomnia came and I just could sleep. Often I was like a walking zombie.  

Again my consultant come to the rescue, his wife has experienced Mummy Radar too, as I now know so do a lot of mummies, so he prescribed sleeping pills.  We went through most of them until we found something that worked for me.  Not a traditional sleeping pill, but an antipsychotic (blush).

This little pill has kept me sane.  Through all the surgeries, through all the pain, through the depression, I have always know it is there is I need it and now I only take it when times are really bad.

They use sleep deprivation as a torture and it truly is, it makes me ratty, irritable, grouchy and generally not a nice person.

Thankfully MadDad and I realise this and we ensure that I have at least one nights unbroken sleep a week.  He also ensures that I get a lie in one day over the weekend.  It makes a vast difference and realising this was a turning point in my treatment.