Awake

By Nicole Ferraro January 2012

I blinked my eyes open. Early morning sunlight sneaked through the blinds on my window, casting a glow on the mess on my floor. Sitting up, I saw my bedroom in complete disarray. There were ripped Hefty bags and stuffed animals spanning twenty-four years strewn across my rug. My room looked like the scene of a barnyard massacre. Looking under my covers, I discovered I was clutching a giant pastel-blue stuffed bunny I’d received as an Easter gift when I was twelve. I could only assume I had spent hours in frantic search of this toy, tearing through our storage areas until I located it. I didn’t remember doing any of that, couldn’t remember the evening at all. But I never could when I was on Ambien. Groggy and confused, I tossed my comforter to the side and started to clean up the mess.

Insomnia had been a part of who I was for most of my life. As an adolescent growing up in Whitestone, Queens, I spent countless nights in my twin bed in the attic staring up at the ceiling, or watching the time on the cable box, waiting for morning. I tried distracting my mind, [...] continue the story

Sleep – Is It Overrated or Am I Just Stubborn?

By Soania Mathur

Well here I am, 3:40 AM, up and out of the warmth of my bed – yet again. It’s been years of sleep issues of every sort. Sometimes it’s initial insomnia where I’ve spent countless hours staring into the darkness, reading into every shadow, tossing and turning, trying to find a comfortable position, trying not to wake my husband, trying not to look at the clock which seems to mock my difficulty. Other nights I do fall asleep, either because I haven’t truly slept in literally days or because I’ve given in and actually taken yet another pill, this one designed to make me sleep for a few precious hours. I don’t often do this, mostly due to my own stubbornness, the desire to will my body to do what it’s supposed to do without the need for something outside of me to do the job. This obstinate stand usually frustrates my husband and my oldest daughter whose plea “Mama, what’s one more pill especially if it helps?” makes complete logical sense. Yet to me that one little pill (or the three it takes now) represents yet another way this disease has taken away my ability to control [...] continue the story

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