Saturday, February 23, 2008

Losing Sleep

A few days back, Glo Gamat, a new friend of mine, wrote about the importance of sleep in one of her health blogs. According to her article, when we lose sleep, we become "bad-tempered, tearful, forgetful, depressed and clumsy". When I read her article, I just shrugged it off, thinking that I’m not one of those people whose moods and emotions go through a major shake-up the moment they lose on their precious zzz’s. Unknown to me, I was already in the midst of a critical shake-up at that time, due to, of course, lack of sleep. Surprisingly, this condition isn’t new to me. Remember my sleep debt? Looking back now, I've been continuously losing sleep for the past year already!

My sleep problems started in late 2006. While my need for sleep is not really confined to the 8-hour myth, I knew then that I was not getting the quality of sleep I needed. My sleep was either too short, or disturbed that I will wake up feeling groggy in the morning and drag myself to work. And like what Glo said, I am one of those people who try to find lame excuses for not sleeping right. I had deadlines, and I needed to work. I love to work late into the night, when it's quiet and I'm alone. I also read at night and watch late night TV programs, and there are a lot of other reasons why I cut my sleeping time.

And so two weeks ago, all of the sleep neglect I had been consciously doing took its toll on me. At first, I could not explain why I felt so depressed, irritable, and suddenly suicidal. I was hopeless, restless, and unable to focus. I was so distracted! And it all happened several days after the GS launch, when I didn't get enough sleep, enough rest, and my meals are mostly from fastfoods. All the stress, all the bad foods, and lack of rest made me one ill-tempered person. Sadly, the condition almost cost me my partner. But that's another story.

Well, I guess, sleep is something a lot of us forget to value. But then again, our bodies will demand us to get enough of it, in ways that we sometimes have very little control. Believe me, I've been there.

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