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Apr 30

Taking Sleep for Granted

So now it can be told, I started working out again just before Lent started. I’m down roughly 13 pounds even with being inconsistent with workouts because of Alternative Spring Break (I missed a week and then the trainer was out of town the following week). I’ve added a lot of muscle and dropped a good deal of fat.

I’ve been getting up early to workout at either 6:30AM or 8:00AM. I’ve changed my diet slowly but it’s much better than it was–I still have a long way to go there. My shoulders are pinning back further. People have noticed the weight dropping. One of the UB coaches said the other day, “Dude, you’re looking real good. Keep it up.” Motivation is everything.

But then about two weeks in, I was waking up in the middle of the night (about 3 times a night) with a horrible case of dry mouth. I mean literally, it was like someone took a wet vac and sucked all the moisture out of my mouth. I thought maybe my body wasn’t producing enough saliva. I tried some biotene (a saliva producing agent. It relieved the dry mouth but it would come back again in about half an hour. One day after a workout, I literally couldn’t form words until I got some water.

Then I started falling asleep. At like 2 in the afternoon. One of my colleagues found me sound asleep at my desk one day and was alarmed. I’d be home and would sit on the couch and would fall asleep in the middle of my favorite TV show. Ugh. Horrible. I had to get things done quickly or I’d forget to do them because I’d fall asleep and wake up and not remember that I hadn’t done it. I nearly missed an important appointment one day because I woke up 20 minutes before I had to be there.

I suspected diabetes. My sister and mother have it. I had a good deal of the signs. But a check of my sugar levels were normal. My doctor asked me to call my wife while we were in the office. We asked her if I had been snoring. I knew the answer.

“Oh yeah!” And it was more frequent in the past few weeks.

Sleep apnea. So off to the sleep center for a study. I tried a CPAP mask on for the first time and they have to monitor me so you see all those ledes all over my face (there were some on my shoulders and legs too. Surprisingly, I slept fine. I woke up once to go to the bathroom and I have no idea what time it was. I returned to sleep and slept really soundly and was disappointed when they woke me up around 6AM.

Now I can’t wait to get the machine at home. Dozens of friends and colleagues tell me that they have had to use it as well and report great success. Losing weight actually might cure me of this–so I’m hopeful I won’t need it long term—but after the restful sleep I got last night, I’m actually looking forward to it.

So today let’s pray for those who are deprived of sleep. Whether it’s sleep apnea, mental illness, or just fear of falling asleep in a homeless shelter. We all need to rest and relax and give the body time to recharge. It’s how God designed us after all. We often pray before we go to bed (mostly that we wake up!) so tonight take some time to pray for a restful sleep as well.

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1 comment

  1. Fr. Larry

    Bravo, Mike. I LOVE my CPAP, and I’ve taken it all over the world with me. Some people find it hard to adjust to, but I’ve slept so well– from the first night– that I look forward to strapping on the ol’ mask every night.

    Good luck. You’ll feel so much better when you’re really sleeping!

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