Just what the doctor didn’t order.
Dr. P specifically asked me, “Do you understand the importance of not doing all-nighters anymore?”
I responded meekly, “Well, maybe.”
She told me that if I’m deliberately depriving myself of sleep I should take some extra Topamax or Thorazine, something that will knock me out, to force myself to sleep and stabilize my mood. Topamax, which acts as a mood stabilizer, worked very well at this a few weeks ago when I took an extra 100 mgs one night.
So did I take an extra pill? Nope.
Why am I doing this? First of all, I don’t feel tired. My mind is working brilliantly, and I know if I sleep now I might fall into a depression. It’s a race against the inevitable, and the inevitable will, by definition, eventually win. Given that because of my illness I have my “useless” times, times that illness gets in the way, times that I cannot function, I celebrate the times that I can be productive, more than a “normal” would, because these times can be fleeting.
So now I celebrate. Tomorrow I may fall.
Depriving myself of sleep is like depriving myself of food. I push myself and push myself. I disregard the doctors. It’s like I want to stay sick. Anorexia is one of a handful of mental illnesses where in fact the patient does and does not want to get well.
Here’s what I used to tell myeslf when I was 22: “I am special. I don’t need as much food as other people. I can get by on less. Sure, most people my height should weigh about 115, but I’m different and should weigh in the 70’s. I’m so special that I can endure hunger. I am strong enough to endure the suffering of hunger. Other people can’t stand it but I can. I am special in a way that only I can recognize, because the rest of the world sure doesn’t know who I am.”
Everything seems so out of proportion and strange. QB, the dog I had put to sleep back in November of 2006, used to bark at his reflection certain windows, as if he were seeing some strange dog, not himself. I feel lke barking at that strange woman I see reflected back to me; whether accurate or not, I don’t see her that way, and I am frightened.