Every night as I head to bed, there’s this moment of joy and comfort I experience, which I assume most people experience at least every now and again—that feeling after a long day of work or maybe travel, that you will finally get to lie down and get some much-needed sleep that you will revel in every moment. You experience the comfort of knowing that when you wake, you’ll be energized, rested and ready to do it all over again.
Where my experience differs, however, is that my “long day” may well have been me having gone to get myself something to eat across town or having gone out with some friends for a few hours—only because they had finally woken me up around 5 pm that same day. My experience also differs in that, although I sense the joy and comfort of that anticipated rest, it’s only a momentary enjoyment because I remember that the feeling of rest and refreshment upon my next awakening is merely a far-fetched desire that I have only known the pleasure of a handful of times in my lifetime. Yet, night after night, if only for a fraction of a second, I fool myself into thinking I’ll experience that the next day. I think for a moment that maybe I won’t even have to set an alarm and not have to take what is virtually the equivalent of a hit of prescription cocaine to even WAKE UP on my own accord and not waste two thirds of my day yet again.
For probably 6 years now, I have fooled myself for those few seconds every night—I think because that momentary bliss makes what follows more bearable. You see, after that moment, I remember that no matter how badly I wish to do it on my own, no matter how much sleep I’ve already had that day, without medication, I know that I have no way of predicting when I’ll wake up next. Even with medication, I still have a small fear of this because no drug is 100% effective every time. Of all the things that frustrate me about having hypersomnia, the absolute worst of it for me is the fear of something that is so natural for everyone else—that they probably haven’t even thought about it this way. That blissful moment before the fear that I endure with more than fair reasoning nightly—and any time I go to lie down to sleep for that matter—is undoubtedly why I fool myself Every. Single. Time.