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#65067 - 03/23/03 10:37 AM 4 am....awake again
taipan Offline

Registered: 03/09/03
Posts: 57
Loc: CT
Hi all, its 4 am and I'm awake again. I don't know why but I wake up this time every night with mild anxiousness and my mind starts going which will keep me awake until 5 when I have been taking an hour long walk. If I could only find out what causes this anxiousness in the night maybe I could sleep ALL night for a change.
I want to go in the other room and crawl in bed with Lori and give her a big hug, but they (Lori and my T) tell me is that I am looking for someone to take the anxiousness away....which will not help me heal. I understand that BUT (there is always a but) what if being separated is causing this anxiousness? ................Now that I said that I realize that I was anxious long before (we met when I was 17 and she 15!...22years ago) we were separated. I used to get nightmares, at least I'm not having them anymore (they are pretty scary). It is so hard to separate the feelings out...which are from SA (and now being triggered by being separated) and which are from actually being separated from Lori. What a struggle this is.
I'm feeling a bit better now that I am thinking all this through...but I wish I could find exactly what it is causing this anxiousness to wake me (sweating and mildly shaking) every night! I hate to just take a pill and go back to sleep...I don't see how that will help either. I guess after I post this I will get back in bed and sit with it for a while to see where it takes me.
Lori came home last night on the 3rd day after her surgery, she is doing very well. She is, of course heavily medicated for the pain. She is a very brave and strong women; I am so proud of her for overcoming all she has gone through in her life and how she has built herself into such a beautiful person. She is an inspiration!
When she came home last night she didn't want me to reheat the mashed potatoes and carrots (I made for diner for me and the kids) for her. So I brought in her bag, flowers and balloons (that I sent her from me and the kids) from the car, and I went to snuggle with my daughter and watch Disney until it was bed time. I let Lori be by herself up in her room (she went right up after saying hi and goodnight to the kids). She was awake for a while but wanted to be alone. It was /is hard but I am giving her the space she needs. 1 night down.
Well thanks for listening, I am going back to bed to either sleep or follow this pain in my belly.
Thanks again all of you for being there!

#65068 - 03/24/03 01:23 AM Re: 4 am....awake again
The Dean Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 2080
Loc: Milwaukee, WI
I really believe that true anxiety attacks, and panic attacks are among the most distressing things that can happen to us.

When I am in the midst of anxiety I can't think at all. There is no way I could just sit with it and try to figure it out. Later I might be able to see what sparks a lot of stress.

I am sure sorry that you and your wife are separated.
You are being very good and understanding it seems to me. So you were a "first love marriage" eh? Somehow, that just seems really good to me.

Do take good care of yourself--you walk at 5 AM??? Yikes, I admire that.


If we do not live what we believe, then we will begin to believe what we live.

#65069 - 03/24/03 12:35 PM Re: 4 am....awake again
SandyW Offline

Registered: 02/25/03
Posts: 86
Loc: NJ
Stay strong! It must be so hard for you to withhold the affections and feelings you have for your wife. There is still hope if she is remaining "housemates" with you. It must be so confusing for you to not express yourself to her as I've learned that most survivors struggle getting to the point where they can express their feelings. Now you're there and you have to restrain your feelings once again. Remeber, this is only a season in your life and it too will pass.


#65070 - 03/27/03 10:41 PM Re: 4 am....awake again
PAS Offline

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
Wow.. I've been struggling with the 4am wakies as well!!! For about 2 months now!!!

I have recently started hypnotherapy and my therapist has suggested journalling - it is funny how you can wake up and know something is wrong, but it takes me writing for a good half hour to start to dig into these issues and start to put them into perspective.

With respect to WHY we wake up at 4am.. I asked my therapist - as she practices hypnotherapy she's an expert on brainwaves. She explained that if you are currently struggling with anxiety/panic you will likely wake up almost exactly 4 hours from the time you went to sleep, as that is when the first REM period (dream state) ends and it is actually fairly normal to awaken at this time of the night. Most people wake up for about 30 seconds, but most people dont remember this and fall right back to sleep again.

However, it is very difficult for anxiety sufferers to keep the "scaries" at bay after the first REM cycle. The brain has been quieted for awhile, and while we have been sleeping we are not expending the energy to keep our fears crushed down. (It takes a LOT of energy to manage anxiety!!). Therefore, the brain starts to release the fears, and BAM we cant get back to sleep!!! Our minds are racing, etc. Heh.. over the past few weeks I have rearranged my room, cleaned my apartment several times over, gone for a drive, even went to my office to put some stuff away, all between 4 and 6 am!!!

FYI my BF (SA survivor) SWEARS by journalling - and I am starting to be a big fan of it. He finds it allows him to make sense of his thoughts and figure out what he is REALLY feeling, so he can try and devise a way to deal with it.

Why not write in your journal when you wake up at 4am? I have titled my journal the "4 am chronicles"... \:\) Probably better than watching the cheesy infomercials on the tube at 4am (I'm getting sick of watching Anthony Robbins hawk his "personal power" tapes!!!)



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