As I have written on many occasions, like here and here and here I have been fighting serious insomnia demons for awhile now...like since I was pregnant with my almost 4 year old. The last year and a half has been the worst. I thought that having my gallbladder out and stopping the pain was going to be the magic bullet. Then I hoped it might be a book on sleep, acupuncture, Ambien, herbs or eliminating EMF pollution. The Ambien helped me sleep at night but unfortunately made me feel stupid half the next day as well. The acupuncture has had some effect as did the herbs, I think that the combination has helped me leave work and finances and stupid people where they belong--out of my head and bed at night. What they couldn't quite help me overcome were my hormones. I didn't sleep at all when I was pregnant with Boobah, during the middle trimester my OB told me it was hormonal insomnia and unfortunately by the time it cleared I'd be too uncomfortable to sleep--and he was right!
So, I went back to said OB/gyn last week. After his exam upstairs and down I told him of my long, sad tale of sleepless nights. I told him how I wasn't sleeping at ALL the days before AF shows up. And the combination of no sleep and hormones was making me a no good, very bad, not nice person. I felt totally out of control, unable to hold my temper and just plain mean. We discussed the benefits of exercise (which I assured him I knew and was trying to practice), the possibility of a sleeping pill (again, tried) and finally the possibility of using a SSRI during part of my cycle. He told me it sounded like I was obviously pretty sensitive to the hormones, severe PMS or what they are calling PMDD these days and gave me an Rx to try. He told me how to adjust the dose if I was getting some relief but not enough, discussed the advantages of taking it everyday vs. taking it the last half of my cycle and out I walked with an anti-depressant.
Being 5 days before the arrival of Aunt Flo I went ahead and took the plunge. That night I slept reasonably well--along with the next four. Five nights of sleep in a row, including the dreaded two days before she arrived, which journaling my sleep has shown NEVER happens, not even close. I am amazed, I feel like a new person, no screaming, no crying, and no desire to shut the rest of the world and my family out. I only hope that this is the beginning of a long string of rest filled nights and not just the placebo effect of trying something new. So far, two nights without the meds and I am still sleeping. I am half holding my breath, expecting something to get in the way of my sleep but for now I'm going to keep up the other stuff and hope that all rolled together they equal a good night's sleep for a long time to come.