Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Weird Dreams

I finally got some decent sleep last night. I'm not saying it was perfect; there were a couple of times that I still got up to arrange the pillows as well as to take pain medication at right around 3:30 because I woke up with a poker in my heel. Other than that, I got out of bed at 11:30 this morning - very carefully, I might add - and made my way into the bathroom to wrap a garbage bag around my leg and shower. Martha got me a shower chair so that I can do this, and I'm glad she did because it is amazing how much more human one feels after getting clean.

One thing I will talk about, though, is the quality of sleep I've been getting. For the first time in days I dreamed during sleep. This is significant; the quality of anyone's sleep is determined by whether or not there are dreams. It is also measured quantitatively by what is known as the REM level. REM stands for "Rapid Eye Movement", and it is used to measure the depth of sleep we are able to get to. There are 5 levels, REM 1 being the most shallow, and REM 5 being the deepest. I learned some of this when I was being evaluated for Obstructive Sleep Apnea, and it is fascinating to see what happens when our sleep is interrupted. Prior to the surgery, I was getting decent sleep where I wasn't waking up much and I was clearing the junk out of mind - dreams are a sort of debriefing we do during sleep, and this is helpful because it relieves stress and makes us able to function from rest. Sometimes it doesn't seem like that is happening, however, as when I am dreaming it's like I'm in an episode of "Mission: Impossible" or a James Bond movie. Until last night, however, I hadn't dreamed very much since after the surgery.

Last night and early this morning, however, I did dream. And the dreams were strange. The medication, I suspect, had some influence on what I dreamed - it was as thought I'd been drinking heavily - felt as though I was drunk in my sleep. The action sequences in my head weren't much different than that, either; I was acting out of control in among the crowd of people I was with, but they didn't seem to notice as they weren't much different. This went on in a number of dreams I seem to have had, and when I woke up I actually felt a little like I was hung over.

Definitely has to be the medication; I haven't a clue as to what else would make me feel that way.

I feel much better now, and the sleep was welcome. The dreams - I'm not so sure. We'll have to see if tonight is any different.

1 comment:

Laura said...

Hi Walt: I dream every night, while others tell me they do not dream. I dream in color, too. Not everyone does. The only ones I don't like are the ones where your trying to get away because something is coming after you, and you can't move. I wonder if you can dream about an experience that you have not had while your awake? Sweet dreams nonetheless.