April 28, 2020

Developing a "Normal" Sleep Routine

For my entire life, I've had problems with sleep. Either I am dead tired and I toss and turn all night long, feeling so frustrated that I can't fall asleep; or, I am wide awake and I never feel tired at all. I can go to bed at 2:30 AM and wake up at 5:30 AM and feel totally fine!

A lot of times, it has to do with my bipolar--when I'm hypomanic, I can easily feel great on 2-3 hours of sleep. When I have depression, I tend to toss and turn, feeling SO tired but unable to sleep--and then I am just dragging all day from being tired.

I've never been a napper--even when I've tried, I simply CANNOT fall asleep during the day. I could be dead tired and still won't be able to take a nap.

In setting small goals lately, and trying to make positive healthy changes, I would really like to work on my sleeping patterns. I'll probably have to really force it at first, but I have a plan for how I'd like to make it work out.

Since Jerry works the day shift now, he wakes up at 4:45 AM. He really should be going to bed early--like 9:00 PM--but he stays up until about 10:30. Lately, I've been staying up until 2:30 or 3:30 AM, so he wakes up shortly after I go to bed! And then I wake up at 7:00 or so. It's been all over the place.

Ideally, I'd like Jerry and I to have the same schedule, so that we can go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time. I really wish that we were able to do it on MY schedule (night owl), but obviously we'll have to so what works with his schedule.

So, here is my plan:

Jerry gets home at 6:30 PM, so we'll eat dinner right when he gets home. After dinner, we will go for our family walk. Then we'll either play a game or watch a show with the kids while we have a bedtime snack.

At 8:30 PM, instead of watching TV before bed (right now, Jerry and I will usually watch TV and eat snacks--something that has become a really bad habit), I will read a book until 9:00 PM. Reading in bed always makes me SO tired... to the point where I'll even fall asleep for a split second and drop my Kindle on my face sometimes, haha. I think that by reading instead of watching TV before bed, I'll be tired enough to fall asleep early.

Then, I will wake up with Jerry in the mornings at 4:30 (kill me now!). We can have coffee/tea together before he leaves for work. I'll write a blog post after he leaves (usually I write posts after he goes to bed), so it'll be nice to have time to get that done early in the day.

I'm really hoping that making this a routine will help me develop a real sleep schedule--and that I'll get more sleep in general. I've been wanting to work on reducing stress and anxiety so that I'll stop gaining weight from emotional eating! Also, going to bed early just means less time for snacking in general.

I'm super excited, too, because coincidentally, our new Brooklinen sheets arrived today! As you know, I am obsessed with Brooklinen bedding. I've had the same set for a few years now, and I've been eyeballing their new Linen collection. We had the Luxe Sateen (and it's amazing), but when I saw that they came out with a Linen collection, I was in lust.

So, I bit the bullet and ordered the Brooklinen Linen collection (sheets, duvet cover, and pillow cases). They are AMAZING. I'm sitting up in bed typing this right now, and I just love the feeling of this bedding. They were expensive--I'm not going to lie--but considering I'm going to start spending one-third of my day in bed, I might as well be as comfy as possible!

(By the way, if you use this link and order anything from Brooklinen, you will get $25 off of an order over $100; and it gives ME a credit for $25. So, if you end up wanting new amazing sheets (or other items they sell--I haven't tried anything else), pretty please use that link. I am not affiliated with Brooklinen in any way, other than to say that I'm obsessed with their bedding!)

Okay, well, I'm going to go to sleep now because I have to get up at 4:30 AM! Let's hope that I can get some restful sleep. Good night :)


  1. Sleep problems can seriously affect your quality of life and your health! I have also had life-long issues with sleep, but I am a natural lark (I want to get up at 3 or 4!).

    I have pristine sleep hygiene--get in bed to read at exactly 9:00, lights out at 10 when husband came in, black out shades, ear plugs, white noise, temperature at 64 winter and summer.

    I managed until menopause when sleep forsook me. It felt biblical in proportion. I tried every kind of medication--anti-depressants, tramadol, gabapentin and they all had side effects and seemed to stop working as my body became accustomed and then were terrible to taper off of.

    What works for me is small doses of ambien on an as-needed basis. If I can't fall asleep or get back to sleep (which is usually my problem) I bite off a tiny dose (1-2 mg from the lowest pill which is 5mg) and it gets me 2-4 hours. If I have to take a lot, I feel kind of stupid in the morning, but no other side effects and it has not stopped working after 2=15 years. I'm very careful to take only what I need.

    Some people argue that it's not the same quality sleep. It feels different--almost like you've been knocked out-- but I can tell you that 3 hours of deep ambien assisted sleep and I feel much better the next day than if I had 5 hours of unassisted light, restless sleep.

    Oh, and when the kids left the house, my husband moved into one of their bedrooms to sleep most of the time and we have a much better marriage because of it.

    I think I will try the Brooklinen sheets--the only question is whether I get them for him too!

    1. Wow, it sounds like getting good sleep is tough for you, too! I'd really love to be one of those people that has a good sleep routine. And especially being able to sleep through the night uninterrupted!

      If you try the Brooklinen sheets, get some for yourself--and then if hubby likes them, order some for him, too! But I guarantee you will love them. And their customer service is phenomenal!

  2. Haha! You'll do great up until you get the kittens! Sweet dreams! Lol!

    1. Hahaha! The boys are REALLY hoping that the kittens will sleep with them. Estelle insists on sleeping with me ALWAYS, so if I put the kittens in with me, so will be fuming mad ;)

  3. I hope the sleep shifting works for you. I used to be a night owl in college, but now I don't mind the mornings - if I can get to bed early enough to get a decent amount of sleep! That's the problem. I also often have insomnia. Sigh.

    1. The odd thing with me is that I have no problem getting up fairly early (6-8 ish) but I just cannot go to bed early! I love having time at night to do my own thing after everyone else is in bed. But I know I need more sleep, so I'm going to try.


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