Saturday, June 27, 2009

Turning a sleepy corner

June 17 is a day I may celebrate in future years.

That because June 17 is the day I found out I have mild sleep apnea, courtesy of my new ear/nose/throat physician giving me the results of my sleep test. Of course, if you have mild sleep apnea, you don't think it's mild. Waking up 13 times in REM sleep ... and having your oxygen drop to 82 percent overnight doesn't sound very good to me.

And June 18 is the day I got my CPAP machine on 30 day trial -- to see if I can tolerate it. CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure.

The first night with the CPAP was tough. Tough to go to sleep, tough to deal with the mask on my face, tough to get over the strange feeling of the humid air that's coming at you.

But the first day after the first night was amazing. Usually, I'm very drowsy and turn off the alarm multiple times. That morning I popped out of bed clear-headed and was that way all day. In face, since this experiment started, I haven't had a microsleep and haven't gotten sleepy in the afternoon. I haven't had to take a nap since I've been using the machine. This is all incredible to me.

Probably the only problem is my husband's reaction to a photo I sent him of me in the CPAP mask. Maybe that was a mistake, but his reaction was -- am I going to have to wear it to bed when he's there (he's working overseas right now) and surely I'm not going to have to wear it forever. Hopefully, he'll be able to get over the shock of my looking like Hannibal Lecter or a small elephant, with that hose hanging from my nose.

Hopefully, he'll understand the downside of sleep apnea -- like a tendency toward high blood pressure, depression, weight gain and a higher tendency toward strokes and heart attacks. I want to be around for a long, long time.

And hopefully the CPAP will help my metabolism come back up. I had felt like I don't have any metabolism at all and was getting resolved that I was just going to have to get used to being a fat person forever. Now I'm very hopeful that's not the case and it's given my Weight Watchers efforts a big boost.


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