Drunk With Fatigue
Are you reading this through bleary eyes as you desperately await the effect of a caffeine boost to kick start your weary self into life to endure another day? Perhaps you can vividly recall that drained sensation that haunted you and that nagging ache which was ever present behind your eyeballs? The need to close your eyes and slip into a deep and restful slumber. All you wanted to do was to close your eyes and allow the tiredness to evaporate and shrouded in the amnesiac qualities of sleep you would be given respite from the nightmare that enveloped you. Yet, you were never able to achieve that sleep. Your near permanent anxiety meant that as you lay in bed you were tensed, ready to respond to the next jibe or manipulation. You heard a click. Was that me exiting the study at long last and coming to the bedroom or was it just the house settling? You were hyper vigilant and you cannot now recall how long that state had existed but you did know that it caused a nightly battle where you tried to sleep but each sound made you twitch and ready yourself. Sometimes you must have fallen asleep, such was the extent of your exhaustion and you dreamed and then suddenly you awoke. What had happened? Why did you awake so suddenly? You twist and see me there lying fast asleep, unburdened by any concerns. Even now you want to reach out and touch me in the hope that my hand will be placed on your shoulder and then my arm will envelope you, making you feel safe and secure, like it once did. You have learned not to reach out though for the consequences of waking me from my rest are not worth experiencing again. Instead, your shaking hand retreated and you turned to look at the clock and you sighed with resignation as you realised that the fitful sleep you had endured was only about an hour in length.
You lay there, eyes stinging and head heavy giving thanks that it was not one of those nights where I repeatedly jabbed you in the back to stop you sleeping. How did I manage to do that and then bound from the bed refreshed and revitalised as you rose like a zombie? How had I been able to interrupt your sleep through the night by prodding you and yet I was energetic? Was I sleeping during the day like some vampire hiding from the sunlight? At least this time I am sleeping and you have been spared the intermittent prod in the small of your back. It is a small mercy since the questions and thoughts race around your mind, as they always do in the dead of night. Why is this happening? What has gone wrong? Why am I doing this? When will it end? How can you stop it? Should you ask me to talk about it or will that risk another argument? How much more can you take? When did you last sleep properly? These questions and more besides whirl around in your mind, having taken a hold in your head. Your eyes flick to the silent television set in the corner of the room and you debate watching something, anything, just to break the relentless churning in your skull, but even with the volume set at barely audible you know it will disturb me and then it will be your fault again.
You look to the door now closed. You managed to resist a lock being fitted to the bedroom door, wary of what further horrors might be unleashed against you if your exit was barred but each day you fear that on your return that you will see an invoice from a joiner on the kitchen table and a lock has been fitted. You ponder whether you should head downstairs and see if sleep will come on the sofa or at least you can put the headphones on and listen to a radio play or some music. That would provide some sanctuary but yet again, as if possessed of some sixth sense, you know that I will appear and demand to know what you are doing downstairs in the middle of the night. No matter how deeply I appear to be sleeping it as if I sense your absence and come looking for you. It is then that you face the accusations of texting some man behind my back even though your ‘phone is not to hand. It does not matter what the facts are does it? I always find a way of twisting the blame on to you. No, you cannot steal downstairs and instead you must remain board stiff in bed as your eyes watch the incessant march of time and sleep remains evasive. You can feel the hammering of your heart in your chest. Even though nothing is happening and all is quiet and still, that sense of foreboding remains. A cold hand of dread has gripped your heart and squeezes, driving the breath from your body and causing anxiety to spread across you. Perhaps you ought to see the doctor and see if he will prescribe something for this? You will need to do it without my knowledge otherwise I shall accuse you of attention-seeking by going to the doctor without consulting me first. I, of course, know what is best for you and I screen everything you do before determining whether I shall allow it. You know you ought to fight against it but you are so tired, so weary and you need what little strength remains to help you navigate a way throughout the day without treading on a mine and causing an explosion of fury. It is getting harder. You forget things now. Your memory used to be excellent or at least you think it did. Even thinking is becoming arduous and sometimes you just sit, staring into space, caught somewhere between wakefulness and hypnosis. If only one night of rest could come, if only this anxiety, this fear, this wariness would leave you and let you gain some strength, then you would not make the mistakes and I would not be angry. Perhaps then we could be as we used to be. You can still remember that and hope with all your heart that somehow this situation can be retrieved. You never felt tired then. You never walked with a shuffle or placed the milk in the dishwasher in error. You did not forget you were baking something until the acrid smell of smoke jolted you from your daydreaming and had you running into the kitchen, cursing your foolishness and immediately wondering if you could cook a fresh batch before I came home and witnessed another of your failures.
The clock shows 5am and sleep has evaded you once more. The dull throb in the centre of your forehead remains. You would have to be up in an hour anyway. There is no point trying to sleep now. You can see the first rind of dawn trying to permeate through the curtains and another day has arrived. You may as well rise and weave through this day, whichever day it is, is it Wednesday or Thursday? You cannot quite remember. You slide your feet from the bed and sit up, glancing at me over your shoulder, back now turned to you, my body rising and falling in a steady rhythm as I sleep on, oblivious to your exhaustion. You stand and sway a little as you ready yourself for another day of feeling drunk with fatigue.
20 thoughts on “Drunk With Fatigue”
So spot on. This was me for 3 years, bHG. I listened to “you don’t love me as much as you used to, I used to be more important than sleep” for another 2 years before I wised up.
Thank you. The fact is you wised-up, the time period whilst annoying is ultimately a side issue.
I have three teenage kids, he has a daughter 2years old. I work as a server and he works late. I was so drained I couldn’t function by the end. I screwed up everything at work to the point I would just burst into tears at the tables of disappointed customers. Once the kids were in bed I had a couple hours to clean the house and me. It was never a rule but it made the most peaceful night if it was done. And he would get home at 1am if he didn’t go for beers with the boys from work. Evwn those night i was asked to wait up for him….and one hour would become 2 as he wanted me to wind down with him after all that. I wouldn’t get to sleep until three or four am. And back up by 8 am. I find a year later it’s hard to relax on my home. I feel anxious still. I don’t do half as much as I used to even for my kids. I just simply don’t have it in me right now. God I always wondered if he had a clue at how absolutely drained I was in every possible way. Now I am sure new. I was a great mom before I met him. I checked out by the end and I’m still struggling to find peace and energy to be a better parent again.
I’m so thankful I told the ex narc that he wasn’t husband material when I met him. I told him I would avoid deep feelings for him by compartmentalizing our relationship. Of course I paid for expressing those sentiments, but still, I sensed the danger he could pose to me from the first. Too overbearing, too macho, too controlling. He tried unsuccessfully to control me even though we had separate housing arrangements! But at the end of our nights we both retired in our own places.
Seriously, he would have been dead had he kept me from getting my sleep. Been there before and it’s the line in the sand that no one will ever cross again.
r u from Honolulu?
During the future faking period we had a discussion about the size of bed we were going to have. He was adamant about getting us a queen size one. Now I understand why…
The emotions recognised here flood me. They’re anxiety-inducing.
HG, were these once yours as a little boy? Did you have nightmares? Did you swear to punish your Mother through every person outside the fearful dungeon of your youth, and then bask in the glory of each victim that successfully managed to be merged with the same pain that you endured? Does the happiness of another individual somehow feel like they’re mocking you?
My mid ranger said he needed to medicate himself to sleep. Was this said for pity? And if it was, then why were there plenty of What’s App time stamps seen indicating the ungodly hour of 3am?
Correct – because he was lying.
Mine does this. He knows i get up very early yet expects me to stay up til midnight chatting. This has been going on for a few yrs and i find myself so exhausted its affected my memory and my energy levels. When i bring up going to bed earlier he gets really quiet and weird about it like i dont want to spend time with him. Its my own fault tho i need to put that in place that ill be getting to bed earlier. Of course theres the fear of retaliation which he does passive aggressively thru my fears. Its in my power to change this tho.
Narcaffair, sleeping at midnight is late?! I sleep past 2am daily. And what about HG? I’m guessing 3am lol. Just trying to inject some humour here. Pls don’t mind!
Lol i know but im up at 4 am most days so thats not a lot of sleep.
Narcaffair, up at 4am? Wow, that’s early! No wonder sleeping at midnight is late for you. I get it! Hope you can get more rest!
None of that. Not anymore. I’ve been increasingly better, stronger, happier.
Beautiful day today. Scored a big one with compliments by my clients and I’m overall back to feeling myself again.
I forgot everything. Last night I even forgave him. I knew because I didn’t feel the anger anymore.
He’s none of my problems anymore.
If he, by any freaking chance, should materialize in my life again like an ultracorp or an ectoplasm I will slide my credit card on paypal and buy some of your advices.
No need to worry… ah!
Sorry to be off topic. HG, last wk a commenter made reference to the movie ‘American Psycho,’ and related it to one of your articles. That prompted my curiosity, so i watched the movie. The character, patrick bateman is a complete crazed lunatic. You’re not like that are you HG? 😰
And the bedroom scene where he is having sex, but is just really focussed on watching himself perform in the mirror, and fixing his hair during the act, dusturbed me so much, i could not sleep. Tell me you don’t do that HG pls? These are not rhetorical questions btw.
I am not a lunatic but I do engage in frenzied behaviour.
The bedroom scene is entirely accurate – notice how he arranged the two prostitutes as part of a tableaux with him as director – think scrap book.
So you arrange them like that in real life or only in the scrap book? Gulp!!! 😖
HG, I recognize that as a Greater you are fully aware of disrupting your partner’s sleep, but does the lesser and mid-range do this deliberately and what is your reason for doing this HG??
Yes they do.
For fuel and control. People are easier to control when drunk with fatigue.
And possibly also when hungry? On a low carb menu? Seriously, N had an IPPS on a diet