14 November 2008

Benadryl Rules

All hail Benadryl! It's a miracle in a bottle!

This is not to say that we had a peaceful night of no interruptions, but it is to say that Maddie didn't wake up coughing until 12:15 a.m., about when the Benadryl was set to wear off, and after a trip to the bathroom and a second dose of medicine, she slept until 7:30 a.m. this morning. Of course, Riley was up when Maddie started coughing, then he was up again at 1:00 demanding a diaper change (since when do 2.5-year-olds poop in the night?!), but he settled down both times pretty quickly.

After I got Riley tucked back in bed with a fresh diaper, it was around 1:15 a.m. Earlier in the evening, I'd fallen asleep reading on the couch and awoken at 9:10 p.m. to find that Patriots football had trumped Grey's Anatomy in the Boston market. Thanks to informative reader Ragtop Day, though, I knew that Grey's was set to air at 1:05 a.m. Hmmmmm, I thought, I've only missed the first ten minutes of Grey's! So I set up shop on the couch and watched the rest. Yes, I'm tired today, but frankly I don't think I'm any more tired than I would have been otherwise, and there was something so cozy and also illicit about watching TV at one in the morning. I even ate a big ol' cookie while I watched. And didn't brush my teeth afterwards. I am CRAZY, I'm telling you, CRAZY.

This past week-plus of relatively lengthy stretches of being up in the middle of the night has made me think of Peace Corps. During my time in Gabon, my sleeping patterns were all messed up. As per local custom, I often took a midday nap. And I usually went to bed pretty early as school started at 7:00 a.m. and I had a 30-minute walk to campus. Between the nap, the early bedtime, and the bizarre side effects of the antimalarial Larium,* I was often wakeful in the night, up for hours, listening to the sounds of the jungle, reading, fretting, etc. That was my sleeping pattern for three years, and while I got to the point of accepting it, I never really liked it or adjusted to it. I'm relatively confident that this spate of middle-of-the-night awake time will not last three years, so I'm finding it somewhat easier to bear, but I'll be glad when I get to sleep through again. Since having the twins I've learned that for me, a six-hour uninterrupted stretch of sleep is the Gold Standard. If I get that, all is well. More is better of course, but I'm trying not to be greedy here.

We've got a social weekend planned: friends to see, places to go, art projects to do. Should be nice, hopefully not too overprogrammed. Happy weekend, everyone.

*I could go on and on about Larium, the side effects, the sketchy nature of the dosage and duration for which Peace Corps volunteers (and members of the armed services) take the drug. It's pretty scary. I'll save it for another post.

19 comments:

Susan said...

Glad to hear the kids are feeling better. And I like the definition of CRAZY for us mom's....watching TV at 1:00 a.m. and eating a big ole cookie :) I work a very weird/difficult schedule that puts me working midnights sometimes and days others....hard on the body with lack of sleep. Hopefully you catch up.

SEC

Giovanna Diaries said...

I wonder if my DVR was smart enough to not record the Patriots game? I hope so.
See ya tomorrow!

Keen said...

Benadryl = awesome. Glad Maddie slept better!

I hadn't thought about those Mefloquine dreams in a long time. I'm so glad to be rid of those side effects.

And you not brushing your teeth after eating a cookie is definitely crazy.

Anonymous said...

Ah yes, Lariam. Also fiendishly disguised as Mefloquine. Why oh why does the U.S. Gov't decide that giving a medication that causes intense dreams in the most harmless version of side effects is good to give Peace Corps volunteers who are isolated culturally, linguistically and under other lovely stresses? Oh yeah. It's cheap.

Not so cheap when volunteers lessen their dose because they are so scared of their reaction, and then contract malaria. (A friend.) Not so cheap whan a volunteer can't function and do the job they are supposed to be doing. (A friend.) Not so cheap when a PCV has a psychotic reaction and has to be med-evac'd to DC, hunh? Not so cheap then. (That one was me.)(I recovered and went back. Malarone is fabulous!)

Glad to hear Benadryl worked.

Bella's Mommy said...

I always find it interesting to hear about your PC experience because it seems so different than mine. I did take my anti-malaria medicine but I don't remember sleep issues or dream issues. I did get malaria, it just was not as bad as if I had not taken my medicine (and yes I always slept with a monquito net and wore insect repelent, I still got bit).

Watercolor said...

Benadryl indeed rules. Even for grownups. lol.

Hope you get more sleep soon.

Louise said...

Another Lariam side-effect sufferer here - at first I thought it was a wonder drug as I'd felt worse on other anti-malarials, but I was soon disabused of that. I could've killed the doc who prescribed it to me for a diving holiday when I came back and ended up in hospital in an altered mental state. I was only on it weeks, can't imagine using it for months :-O

Morgan said...

The craziness is overwhelming! :)

I'd love to hear more of your Larium stories.

Sparky said...

I want to hear more about this Larium. I read the Wikipedia entry and the side affects seem to outweigh it's benefits! Birth defects and paranoia? No thank you!

Have a great weekend and here's to hoping the coughing stops soon.

Ali said...

Glad to hear the benedryl worked. Ya sleep! Don't you hate it when football pushes your show off. Have a great weekend...hope the kids sleeps

Katee "e-polishblog" said...

I agree, Benadryl rocks!

Sara said...

ha! my dad was a country director when i was in high school and i had to take it when i stayed with him during the summers. i had the most exponentially craziest dreams and night terrors EVER and eventually just stopped taking it. stupid in hindsight but at the time twas the only thing that made me stop feeling so completely bonkers all the time. YIKES!

monica said...

Glad the benadryl worked! I use the Walgreens version of a pedi night time cough supressent with my boys when they have a bad cough - seems to work well. And they also have a daytime version which I have use when needed. I have no qualms about giving my kids appropriate stuff to help with what ails them. They need theirs sleep and so do I!

Monica said...

ps. that was a GREAT patriots game, even thought they lost, Matt really rocked!

amyinbc said...

Benedryl was my lifesaver when son was young. Doctor recommended it to help him get into a regular sleeping pattern. And it worked wonders, over a few weeks his body learned to SLEEP the night away.

Glad to hear the kidlets are recovering.

madelyn said...

Larium is just terrible stuff. My sister did a stint in Agola and the after effects of Larium lasted YEARS.

masteroftheuniverse said...

I remember when my son was about 4 years old and was sick. My late, lovely wife was gone for the whole day and left me with instructions to give my son 2/3 of a childrens tube of benadryl liquid for kids. I thought she meant 2 or three tablespoons of Benadryl, and I gave him the adult stuff. I found him passed out on the floor, kneeling with his butt sticking in the air and his face buried in the carpet. He was snoring, and I put him to bed. I'm a guy and didn't know any better, but my wife was really pissed when she got home. Anyways, there was no harm done.

Jeff

Kathryn said...

Ahhh...Larium....My son took it religiously throughout his time in Tanzania and still got malaria...What was the point of that little exercise, then?

Glad Maddie slept...thank heavens for HELPFUL drugs

amber said...

* we only caught the tail end of the pats game in the airport waiting for our red eye flight to NH. looked like it was a great game.

* watching grey's at 1am? sounds like a good night to me!

* we were on malarone during our trip to the amazon earlier this year. i felt off, but nothing like the craziness described when you're on lariam. yikes!

*glad to hear the benedryl worked. wonder drug indeed.