Looks like the Doc is a duck or about to diagnose, well who knows what?
Far fetched you say? Not according to my experience in a Sleep Lab last night! If I understand this correctly, my yet unnamed Sleep Doc’s report will look something like this:
7:30 p.m. Arrive at sleep lab with way too much stuff packed to keep me busy, plus my pillow and minus my shampoo. Oops. Check-in paperwork.
8:00 p.m. Dinner from a zip lock bag of ingredients from my special “anti-seizure” diet. The HGTV marathon begins. We don’t have cable or dish at home. I’m jazzed! Love it or List It. Yeah baby!
8:30 p.m. Get approval for a later bedtime since I usually can’t fall asleep until 2 or 3 in the morning. So they’ll confine me to bed at 11:30 p.m. and I can lay there in the dark with them looking at me through camera behind the black plexiglass window on the ceiling. I could arrange some funny faces or something. I’ll have the time to think of something until I fall asleep . . .
9:00 p.m. Demo and trial of a CPAP mask and machine. Talk about feeling suffocated, yipes! Actually felt relaxed 20 minutes later and wanted to keep it. Not so fast, Missy, as you only get to use it during the study if the test results the first half of the night warrant it. Notice that this means they will be waking me up to suffocate me if I warrant it! Modern medicine.
10:00 p.m. Hardware glued and taped to my head, ribs, face, and legs. Fingertip vice called a pulse ox secured to my right index finger. Lots of colored wires (around 20) are attached to a blue box that would put the back of your computer tower to shame, and hung around my neck. Great. I’m feeling sleepy already, not!
11:20 p.m. Get the “10 minute warning” that they are coming in to put me to bed. How nice. No pillow mints though. No bed either. There’s a Murphy bed in the wall that hasn’t come down yet. Modern medicine indeed.
11:30 p.m. Tech “K” tells me I have to turn off the t.v. and I haven’t found out if the couple will keep their remodeled duplex without the promised new kitchen and bathroom or spring for the $949,000 move-up mansion. Did I mention they came in 5 minutes before the end of the HGTV program twice already? Geez! Anyways, she helps me get settled as best I can into bed with not one but two probes in my nose in addition what appears to be the back of the fuse box connected to my body. Time for bed! Lights go out. Seizure-like tic attacks begin. No need to make faces; the show has begun.
12:00 – 2:00 a.m. Up to the bathroom twice, tossing and turning, praying, praying, praying. Tics on and off with sweats. Sweating persists throughout the night. Why is this mattress so hot? Room temperature feels warm then I’m not sure. Tech “K” comes in twice with each trip to the bathroom to disconnect me from the secret control panel in the cabinet next to the cabinet holding my bed. Remember the old Dick Van Dyke T.V. episodes where the Murphy bed folds back up with the person in it? Yeah, I’m remembering it about now.
2:30 a.m. Start crying and can’t stop. The sound of the furnace is just too loud. My nose itches just too much. I can’t get comfortable and I can’t sleep. I’m sick and tired of being poked, tested, probed, scanned, analyzed, drugged, drained, and worse. I feel very small. And Jesus meets me here.
2:30 a.m. Tech “K” comes in to try to figure out why I’m crying and how to get me to stop. Do I want to stop the test? Sit up? Stop the test? Wondered why she asked me the last question twice. Maybe I’m a handful. She said the most interesting patient she had pretended to be riding a bicycle in the air while sleeping. Guess my show wasn’t that good through the black plexiglass window after all. Then again, I mention the loud furnace. In seconds, we are walking to another room and find that it is much quieter. Praise the Lord! And she says it’s no problem to move to another room. We pack up, bring down another bed hidden in the wall of cabinets and before long I’m in bed again. This room is warmer; feels good initially . . .
I think I fell asleep sometime around 3:00 a.m. after some tic jolts and a few tosses this way and that way. I probably woke up six times (before they said it was 9:00 a.m.), overheated from underneath. Must be a down feather pillow top mattress or something. And before I knew it, the voice on the speaker from above was saying, “good morning Julie, it’s time to get up now.” A few tic zips rang in the new day and then Tech “J” appeared. Tech “K” has gone home. It’s now over for me too: time to unplug, de-stick, and crawl home. We made it Lord.
This day was a rough one, with a straining feeling from broken sleep and feeling torn between napping and sticking it out to go to bed early. Tried the latter and wasn’t able to sleep, again! A host of flu-like symptoms distracted me all day long. It’s one of those times when you wished you could throw up and get it over with — twice. Ate lightly including the prescribed portion of cooked rabbit. Yes, I have a weird diet to match my weird story. (See blog entitled, “Rascally Rabbit,” for more!)
What do a furnace and a sleep lab have in common? One keeps the lab working and the other works despite the furnace. Modern medicine. Have you taken yours today?