No Nap Days
November 29, 2010

Some days are good, some days are bad, and some days are from hell.  The hell days are the days when a confluence of different factors–work schedule, errands, a toddler outgrowing his nap–make it so that I miss my own nap in the afternoons.  This is bad.

You might know that I’m not currently on any medicine for my narcolepsy.  Crazy?  Yes.  Stupid?  Yes.  But with the drugs available for treatment being classified as l3 or l4 drugs–making them questionable to risky to breast-feed with–I feel like the choice is clear.  I can endure exhaustion for a year so that my daughter can have the best start at life.  But even if the choice is clear, it doesn’t make it easy.

If I miss a nap, my risk for sleep attacks increase.  This means whenever I sit down to nurse or read a book to my son, I doze off.  And given Noah’s rash cream debacle–we’re still trying to scrub the Desitin out of his hair–it’s clear that CONSTANT VIGILANCE  is required.  It also means that driving gets dicier; I’ve been in one sleep-related crash before.  I don’t want to do it again.

My mood deteriorates.  I get cranky, impatient with insignificant things.  The brain fog makes it difficult to play creatively with my son or even to interact meaningfully with my infant.  Coffee helps, but we’ve all done the stimulant to patch over exhaustion thing in college.  It leaves you feeling jittery and fried, which is why I hated the Ritalin so much in high school.

There’s not really a solution to my no-nap days, except that at some point after Teagan turns a year old, I’ll wean her, and some sleep doctor will come to work and find me scratching pitifully at the glass front doors.

“Provigil…please…” I’ll rasp.