During the daytime, I have trouble staying awake. (zzzzzzzzzzzzz…oh sorry…I dozed off there for a second.) Years ago I had mono and ever since then, a couple of times each year, (zzzzzzzzzzzzzz…oops). So, as I was saying…a couple of times a year, I go through a two week period where I am tired all the time. But this last time, that two week period turned into a 10 month period. And the one time a day I would need a nap has turned into about 4 times a day. I think that’s kinda not normal. For the last few years I can’t concentrate on anything. And I mean nothing. I thought maybe I was just hanging around some extremely uninteresting people recently who couldn’t hold my attention, but they are the same people I’ve been hanging around with for many years, so I ruled that out. Unless, of course, they’ve always been boring and I just never noticed, and just maybe, as I’m getting older and wiser, I’m realizing I have some pretty f**king brain dead friends. But we can diagnose that at a later date.
I decided it was time to talk to the doctor to see what he thinks [not about my friends; about my sleepiness.] I had various prognoses in my mind as to what it could be. What I didn’t consider was something a petite, somewhat health conscious, exercise fanatic of the female persuasion would ever have. Sleep apnea. Doesn’t that belong to overweight, fast-food eating, non-exercising people of the hairy XY gender?
My doctor wants me to do a sleep study because he thinks I’m tired from not sleeping well [Ya think? Brilliant deduction on his part, I must say] and to determine if it is, in fact, sleep apnea. I told him sometimes I wake myself up because I stop breathing. I have a feeling that’s not really a good thing. And as he pointed out, very indicative of sleep apnea.
Here’s the thing though…I just can’t see myself going to some lab, in an 8’x10’ room, with monitors hooked up all over me; crawling into a strange bed, dressed in…I don’t know what? My PJ’s? And have 5 or more strangers staring at me for 8 hours? I don’t think so. If I couldn’t sleep soundly before, I definitely wouldn’t drop my lids in that situation. They would have to heavily drug me and I would think that may just throw off the whole study. If I have a problem sleeping under normal circumstances, how could they possibly think I could snooze with an audience?
And when do you arrive there? (To wherever ‘there’ is.) At like10AM? At 10PM? If you go early, do you get to eat meals and watch TV? Read? Party with the lab techs? What do you do the whole time you are waiting to go to sleep? Do they make you go to bed at a certain hour like a 5 year old? “Get into bed NOW.” Or is it at my own leisure? I mean, I can’t go to sleep on command. And then if I wake up in the middle of the night, what if I can’t fall back asleep? Can I get up? How do I go to the bathroom if I’m hooked up to major machinery? Will the wires that I’m dragging with me fall into the toilet? So many questions. Don’t stop me now…I’m on a roll.
I’ve seen those contraptions sleep apnea people wear at night…you know…the ones that look like you’re protected enough to walk into a nuclear power plant because nothing will penetrate that face mask? THAT helps you sleep better? That cumbersome 20 pound mask heavily situated on your face enables you to sleep more soundly? You may as well ask an elephant to sit on my face…that’s about as comfortable as that looks. And forget turning in any direction other than facing up towards the ceiling. You’d take your nose off if you turned on your side. And do you wake up with indentations all over your face from the weight of the harness your head is locked into?
So say I did decide to go to a sleep lab. There’s no way they are going to witness what I look like when I get into my own bed. No make-up on, my pajama bottoms pulled up to my waist with the top tucked in and the bottoms tucked into my socks. I’m a real looker. A sort of Urkel type. (And I wonder why I don’t have a man lying next to me…aside from the fact that I snore like a truck driver.)
And what if they find I do have sleep apnea? I’m going to hook myself up to that mask and nuclear testing safety gear and attach myself to some tank every night? Yeah…sure I am. Well…if I don’t have a man now, I’m sure as hell never going to have one EVER. “Hey honey…kiss me good-night before I plaster Chernobyl to my face.” He would probably be happy to not have my very feminine snore-a-thon in his ear anymore, but not so sure he would love the pumping sound that would come from the air shooting into my nasal cavity. I think it may just interfere with some romantic spontaneity.
So, I’m in a quandary. To get tested or to not get tested. I’m just not so sure I actually want to know because I’m not even close to wanting to wear that shit on my face. I think drugs are the way to go. Hey…I’m a child of the 60’s and 70’s…of course drugs are the way to go. Duh. Drugs to help me sleep through the night and drugs to help keep me awake during the day. And if I do have sleep apnea and stop breathing in my sleep…what better way to go than that? Isn't that everyone's dream?