Sleep when I’m dead?

I filled a new prescription last night to help with my shoulder issue. Not really a fan of ingesting 1000 mg of pain medication, but I was certainly looking forward to its effects.

The literature, I noticed, said something different than what I remembered my doctor telling me yesterday morning. Or, rather, that I thought I remembered him telling me. I suddenly was unsure, since a) pharmacy directions are usually pretty accurate and b) my doctor is a concise, to-the-point dude who has you captivated by his perfectly pronounced words, carefully crafted statements and moves efficiently from one appointment to the next. He’s not abrupt or rude, he’s just on a mission. To save shoulders.

I thought I remembered hearing from him that I should “take the medication either at breakfast or at lunch,” but the pharmacy’s directions said to take it at night with food. Maybe what I really heard was him telling me to “not take the medication at breakfast or at lunch.”

Hm. What to do, what to do.

Since it was after hours and my shoulder pain was pretty intense, I didn’t really want to put off taking it for a whole day while I called to confirm which directions were accurate. So I followed the pharmacy’s directions, read the side effects — none of which seemed bad at all — and proceeded to pill-pop.

The day was another stressful one, so I was looking forward to loading my body up with drugs, getting a good night’s rest and waking up pain-free.


I woke up at midnight briefly, but fell back asleep. Then 2:30 rolled around.

Wide. Awake.

After a half-hour of tossing and turning, and the pain in my shoulder not being any better, I wandered into the kitchen to re-read the side effects. Turns out one of the less frequent side effects was insomnia. Leave it to me to snag one of the issues that plagues, like, 2% of the people who take the stuff.

I never fell back asleep, so I passed the time by jotting down some writing ideas, Facebooking, reading the news and tossing and turning some more — just to feel like I was making an effort.

Come 5am, I figured I’d just get ready for work. I arrived at the office at 7am, along with the rest of the early birds who come in at that hour so that they can leave by 4pm.

One of my coworkers was amusingly perplexed when he saw me sitting here. Good times.

I called my doctor’s office to see if I could confirm their instructions, and the gal who was going to relay my message to my doctor asked, “Wait — what medication are you taking?” I told her.

“Oh! You should absoLUTEly take it in the morning. It causes insomnia.”

Great. Pretty sure that tidbit would’ve helped me keep the directions straight, versus the more generic “take it either at breakfast or lunch” with no further explanation.

I feel pretty close to death today. That old saying of there being plenty of time to sleep when you’re dead keeps coming to mind, and I feel like I’m nearing that point. As I told my boss, it’s bad enough that my quality of life is affected by my non-use of my right arm (I expect it will atrophy and fall off any day now), but now I have to be a zombie thanks to insomnia? Fantastic. As he pointed out, however, zombies are really in right now.

While I don’t understand how taking medication at a different time of the day will combat insomnia since, you know, the drug will still be in your system for the remaining 1,439 minutes of any given 24-hour period, I’ll give it a whirl on Friday morning. I figure if I still can’t sleep come Friday night, at least I’ll be a zombie during a bridal shower on Saturday instead of walking around coma-fied in the office. For now, whether it pans out or not, I am thankful for drug clarity, new dosage directions and a weekend just around the corner.

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