When you’ve been anesthetized for surgery, you’re advised to spend the rest of the day with a responsible adult, and warned not to make any important decisions. So why, then, is there a ten-pound bag of Costco chocolate chips draped over my kitchen table like a dead moose? Where was my responsible adult, and what was she thinking to let me buy that?
I woke up this morning—following my first night with a CPAP—rested and refreshed for the first time in memory. By contrast, I usually wake up headachy and exhausted after a succession of nightmares, my mattress wet with sweat. According to my polysomnograms, I awaken seven times an hour, and I stop breathing 43 times per hour—during which my oxygen level drops to 83%. I also grind my teeth and jerk my limbs. People die from such sleep. Nobody wants to pass the night with a noisy air pump and a mask that either feels too tight or leaks, but it sure beats the hell out of hardly sleeping at all.
My hand is greatly swollen, my wrist feels like someone drove a spike halfway through it (which is, actually, pretty much what happened), but I feel terrific. Maybe I will soon have the freedom to think more of things other than my health.