Deep Breaths

My anxiety is accumulating again. This typically results in less sleep. I am lucky if I get more than 6 hours every night. 

Due to work or school, I had no choice but to stay awake to get it done. However, on days with nothing due soon, I tried to go to sleep early. No matter what I did, though, I could not go to sleep before midnight. Non-caffeinated tea, warm baths, avoiding electronics an hour before bed, and the like did not stop my mind from wandering.

Eventually, the lack of sleep caught up to me and I started to experience difficultly breathing. When I breathed in, I would often feel little tremors in my lungs. When I exhaled, it felt like some air lingered and it just made it harder to breathe in again.

Two days passed by before I remembered that I should be taking deep breaths even if it is hard to. I felt so weak and tired. I could not get myself to inhale a full lungful of air. In the first day, I could manage two deep breaths before I went back to shallow breathing.

Remember: Deep Breaths

Last week, I decided to make a physical reminder to take deep breaths. I made a speech bubble with the words, “Remember: Deep Breaths,” reversed. I printed it out and taped to the back wall of my bathroom. Whenever I looked in the mirror, I would read the message and remember to take a deep breaths. Eventually, my lungs strengthened and the tremors went away.

Last weekend, I took a melatonin tablet in an attempt to reset my sleeping schedule. It was the first time I ever took one. Some of my friends have used them and they all recommended taking one full tablet Friday or Saturday evening and see how long it will take before I naturally wake up.

I was busy Friday, so I ended up taking the melatonin at 11:30pm and fell asleep right around midnight. Because that is usually when I fall asleep, I am not sure if the tablet relaxed my mind faster. I did sleep until about 9am Saturday morning, which is different.

Weekend mornings are normally spent waking up at 6am, then go in and out of sleep until about 8:30am. At that point, I have to get up because my mind and body cannot be still anymore.

It was a pleasant surprise to wake up after almost 9 hours of solid sleep. Not once did I wake up. It was also very deep sleep since I did not dream that much. Since taking the melatonin, I have been able to go to sleep earlier and can get through the day easier. My “Deep Breath” reminder is still taped to the back wall, so we’ll see when how long it will take before I am confident I will remember to do this on my own.


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