Therapy and sleep

Session Thursday was so much better than last time. Ron seemed to have really taken my email to him to heart. He didn’t push, didn’t go back to our argument re facing things, and was basically kind and sympathetic. It was what I needed. I’ve been a bit more relaxed since the session, just calming down a bit.

I had some trouble talking. I’ve not been sleeping much, and it’s affected me a lot. I felt like I was almost whispering, though Ron said he could hear me fine. He suggested drawing again, which I used to do a lot of, but had stopped in recent sessions. I always bring my crayons and scratch pad just in case, so I got this out and doodled shapes and colours. I find that soothing, and I know a young part of me loves that.

During the session, I was trying to determine if I felt connected to Ron. I did make eye contact. I much prefer having no conflict, so in that way, I felt more in tune with him. Sometimes I have difficulty feeling that he is real in some sense – I feel as if I’m behind a glass wall. But he seemed moderately real this time.

We did have a moment of humour. Ron doesn’t smile much, but he did this time. I asked him if he’d had any emergency calls from clients distressed by the American election. He said no, just from himself.

He asked me if Trump reminded me of various bad bosses I’ve had, but I didn’t really think so. This kind of blow-hard loud mouth extrovert doesn’t really call up authority figures from my past for me, so I’m lucky in that. My father is a completely different type of person. And of the bad bosses – no one really fit that type either. I said I was upset at first, but now I’m trying not to polarize so much, to realize that the people who voted republican are people too, who see things differently from me, who have completely different lives than I do, and are not necessarily my enemies. Ron said nothing to this, and I suspect he does not much agree. Which is fine. I didn’t want to spend a lot of time on this situation, which is not affecting me that much at the moment. Hoping that remains true.

We tried to figure out why I’m not sleeping. Ron said it’s well documented that job loss can cause sleep issues. I’ve been reading about insomnia, got some books from the library. There’s a lot to know about sleep. So I’ve been trying to track when I go to bed, when I wake up at night, how long I’m up, and when I get up. I am waking up 2-4 times a night at present.

I’ve learned that I’ve been proceeding in a way that is not going to help. I have tended to go to bed early and sleep in late in order to make up for the sleep I’m losing. You’re not supposed to do that. Apparently a ‘sleep drive’ builds up during the day, but you need to be up and about for this to occur. So by lengthening time in bed, sleep drive doesn’t have a chance to build up enough to keep you nicely asleep.

So I’m trying to stay up later, despite my fatigue, and get up with the alarm, even though I don’t need to be anywhere currently. It does give me a lot more hours to my day. To the point where I get bored now in the long evenings, especially since my fatigue makes it hard for me to enjoy anything like a movie, TV or book.

I know some of this sleep stuff is from having PTSD. However. Maybe limiting my time in bed will help – I’ve not tried this before. Anyway. I’ve strayed from the topic of my session, but honestly, I can’t remember much of it. I was just whispering, and drawing, and Ron was being kind and non-pushing, and that’s about it. We did wonder whether now I’m home, the part of me that manages and controls other parts is standing down more, because I’ve noticed parts are forward when I wake up at night and such. I just say it could be.

I feel like if only someone could be kind and present, I could calm down again enough to feel things and so get this therapy and healing back in gear. I think right now I’m still recovering from leaving my job. It’s just going to take a while.

It is a much better feeling to have that trust in Ron back again.

  1. I’ve had a lot of problems with sleep too, Ellen since my marriage ended and my accident. I have found it helpful to go to bed at the same time and get up at the same time. Not to eat too heavy a meal at night and to not worry or stress if I can if I am awake but put the focus on my breath. You have been through a very major shift over the past two weeks and that must be having an effect. Also not being as active during the day has an impact. Hope it eases soon.

    • Ellen said:

      Sorry you’ve had the same issues. I have struggled with sleep for a long time, but now it seemed to fall apart entirely with this stress. But – it’s getting better, and I’m off the meds I was taking. For me, this self-help sleep program really helped. I wasn’t aware of needing to limit time in bed and of needing to be awake for a certain amount of hours, despite being tired, in order to sleep well. Thanks

  2. I am so glad that Ron seemed to hear you xx

    • Ellen said:

      Yeah, me too. Thank you PD.

  3. It is excellent that Ron took your email to heart and is really listening to what you need. It can be difficult to express needs, and he is genuinely listening and responding to you.

    I have had many sessions where I feel like I’m behind glass and everything is sort of distant or away. I hope you are able to get a good night’s sleep.

    • Ellen said:

      It is excellent. I think I’m not realizing that I’m not expressing needs sometimes, and that i need to do that. Ron is actually pretty consistent at responding, so I’m lucky.

      The glass feeling is odd isn’t it? I figure the first step is actually noticing it though. Thank you Sophia

  4. Rachel said:

    Ron really does seem to try quite hard. His heart is definitely in it, even if he at times is lacking in knowledge or skill.
    Sorry about the sleeplessness, that makes everything so much harder.

    • Ellen said:

      Ron is really committed and devoted, that’s for sure. It probably doesn’t come across in my posts often – it’s in the background. Thank you Rachel.

  5. Laura said:

    glad you took a chance and told him what you needed! I hate to admit that I need support, and hate to pay for it. And I think I too rarely consciously ask for it.

    • Ellen said:

      It is very hard for me to ask also, but worth it. Thanks Laura

  6. e.Nice said:

    this post feels like you are more hopeful which is always a good sign. I’ve realized I need to practice good sleep hygiene too. I like that you are researching and finding ways to help yourself and that you feel supported by Ron.

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