Thursday, October 19, 2006

To sleep, to dream...while hooked to loads of wires

7:40 pm, October 18, 2006. Sleep study night.

So far, so uneventful--unless you count the freeways full of traffic that Dean drove through to get me here. (Isn't he sweet?) He's staying in a hotel nearby, 1.6 miles away, according to Mapquest.

The Santa Teresa Kaiser's sleep clinic is a cute little bunch of rooms off a little hallway, and they're decorated like mini hotel rooms--i don't know if they're all different (like the wildly decorated Madonna Inn on the coast of California--we stayed there once.) but this one is painted pretty much the same shade of green as my bathroom at home. The bed is covered with a comforter that i sincerely hope is supposed to be that particular shade of dirty white. There are two really cute chairs in the room, a dresser, mirror, and headboard in a nice reddish-brown wood, along with the requisite piece of hotel art.

The techs are both guys--a little weird, that. Hope i can wear my bra to sleep. i know that's not my normal sleep routine, but then neither is this whole dorm-room-attached-to-many-little-monitor-thingies-being-watched-by-two-strange-men. And the girls could use some support.

A sleeping pill, Ambien, is waiting for me. It was suggested by the woman who called me to see if i could fit into a cancellation spot. So i emailed my doctor to request that. She put in a prescription for one (1.) One single pill. And an $18 pill at that. Okay. A full prescription would have cost me $20 under our coverage, but a single one at its full cost (being less than the copay amount) is $18. Bummer deal. Well, if it helps me sleep well, i may ask the doctor to give me a whole bottle. Clearly nothing else is working.

i'm in waiting mode, as both techs are with patients. There's an adorable little girl about 7 years old who's here for a study. Wow. Since i don't go to bed until 10 usually anyway, they've said to just make myself comfortable--there's a tv, i have my book, so it's all good.

i just hope the study shows something. i've gotten so used over the years to feeling like all the ways i feel unwell are my fault and could aaaall be cured by Proper Diet and Exercise that i halfway expect them to find nothing and send along a "Jenny Craig" brochure with my report.

*10:10 pm.*

Well, i am now officially wired for sound (and whatever else they wire for--delta waves and such.) i look pretty darn funny. It took Tom the tech an hour to do it all. i have wires in my hair, on my face, legs, chest, and these cool purple straps cuddling the girls--one strap above and one below. It's a look. A purple box with numbered plug-ins for the colored wires attached everywhere. i have wires down my jammie pant legs, attached under my chin, under my eyes...i can't actually smile with everything taped to my face.

It's nearly lights out. Tom said he'd be back in about half an hour. As he was going out the door he said, "You can go to the restroom, read, whatever. But what one thing can you not do?" He looked at me expectantly. i looked back blankly, searching for the answer in my brain. i don't know, what? Wear a size 8? "Don't fall asleep!" Oh yeh. He did say that earlier.

i'm banking on that Ambien to get me calm enough to sleep.

This is weird. Good thing i got in so quickly--asked the doctor only a week or two ago. Less time to fret about it. And i'm good at fretting. Possibly a master fretter.


Actually, i'm pretty sure it's still dark outside, so no dawn, just morning. 6 am wakeup call. Last night Tom said, "We wake people up between 5:30 and 6." i said, "Could i please be more toward the 6?" Not a morning person under any circumstance.

Between the pill and my strictly cutting off any fluid intake after 6 pm, i was saved needing to be unhooked and assisted to the restroom in the night by Tom the tech. i did wake up in the night--not sure how often, once or twice out of my 11:30 to 6 night. Given the fact that i normally sleep more like 10:30 or 11 pm to 7 or 8 am (yes, i know i'm spoiled) that rude 6 am awakening is just a blip on the screen of my usual night.

Results come in 4 or 5 days--i now look forward to it.

Tom was a fun chatter while doing the wiring last night--he has 2 girls, 5 and 8, and since he only works 3 days a week, 4 when they're short handed, he gets to spend time in their classes. He admits to riling them up, he's so high energy--i told him we used to tell people who'd get Jarel all wound up in the evening, "You wind him up, you take him home--"

i felt like i was seeing what a grown Jarel could look like out in the working world, a hyper-speed, fast talking man chattering along happily, doing his job.

Dean picked me up and we're now back at the Blue Collar Extended Stayamerica--the parking lot is full of trucks and minivans, while next door at the White Collar Extended Stayamerica Deluxe, the parking overflows with spendly little sports cars. Amusing.

On the way home via 680. Just passed a hand lettered sign stuck on a hill next to the freeway:
eggs leather
Mentioned it to Dean. He said, "Sounds like a bad place to be an ostrich."

Oh what a night.

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