Inevitably when you are sick (with Gastroparesis or any sickness), your time clock becomes completely inverted and screwed up. Then you look like the photo above and lay awake about laying awake. It becomes a viscous cycle and one that is hard to break.
With Gastroparesis it becomes particularly interesting. You know that the best way to feel better is to sleep. You could also say that the best way to feel better is to hibernate and you would be using a better description. You sleep for days and in the process lose days. You have no idea what day it is, what time and you begin to realize why retired people have no idea what day it is. Awhile back I had a good laugh about this with one of my friends who is home on leave with a newborn. We were chatting and neither one of us could figure out what day of the week it was without looking at one of our cell phones. I have become so bad at knowing the day of the week that my boyfriend makes a morning announcement, “Today is Tuesday. It isn’t a holiday and is a work day. You have acupuncture tomorrow not today.”
I’m not sure how much of this is due to Gastroparesis Brain Fog or how much of it is due to insomnia, but either way I become extremely stressed when I can’t get to sleep. Although, I’m not sure it should be called insomnia if it just so happens that you come out of hibernation at night time. Either way, it is hard to lay awake at night and not contemplate Gastroparesis and your day ahead. If you can’t get back to sleep, will you have enough energy to make it through the next day? If you can’t get to sleep, will you become ill again? If you can’t get to sleep, is it Gastroparesis or something else? The list goes on and on. Yet another loop.
However, this morning I am awake. Starting to feel refreshed and getting ready to tackle my day. I’m hoping to not overdo it today and knock out the last bit of this “mini-flair” (if there is such a thing).
Do not adjust your screen! The image above is as blurred as my brain. An interesting phenomenon that happens with Gastroparesis is that sometimes you run on a 5-10-15-20 minute delayed reaction/response. In your mind, no time has passed. However, in reality several minutes have passed and much to your dismay the rest of the world hasn’t stayed on pause along with your brain.
This recently happened to me on this trip. As mentioned previously, when I travel I purchase my own food and keep it in a refrigerator in the hotel room. This particular trip I had forgotten to pack spoons. My boyfriend asked me if I wanted him to go to the front desk and ask for a spoon. I said yes. I thought I responded immediately. He had also asked me what time I needed the alarm clock set for. I said that I couldn’t think about it yet. (By the end of the night, not only is my brain delayed but it can’t multi-task.) I thought I responded immediately again.
However, this is what my boyfriend “claims” happened. (He has always had my best interests at heart and is extremely patient. Based on this, I have no reason to think that his claim is incorrect.) He said that he asked me about the spoon and did not receive a response. A few minutes later he asked about the alarm clock and after an additional few minutes I responded that I couldn’t think about it yet. A few minutes after that he asked about the spoon again and quite awhile after that I again said that I couldn’t think about it yet. Apparently from the first spoon question to my incorrect spoon response, 15 minutes had passed. Apparently I answered the alarm clock question twice but thought that I only answered it once.
The basic chain of events is a complete mystery to me, but these types of conversations happen all of the time. I also know of several other GPers who have the same issue. However, all you can do is laugh about it and collect as many spoons as you can (both figuratively & literally!)