The Morning After a Vivid Nightmare While Titrating

Vivid nightmares. Panic attacks in my sleep. Night terrors. I’ve experienced them all. Time had past, and with some help fixing my sleep hygiene, I thought I finally abolished this cPTSD symptom.

I’m unsure why, but they’re creeping their way back into my only time of true peace.

For the past two months, I’ve been waking up with the pillow crunched under me. I figured it was withdrawal, or possibly general stress that this time of year brings. TL:DR – end of April into the whole month of May is as busy for me as everyone’s Xmas, and plenty of reminders of past hurts.

As time passed, I started waking up with my blanket completely flipped. My jaw has been sore, muscles stiff and achy, eyelids heavy. The past few weeks, I’ve awakened to my pillows and blankets on the floor, fitted sheet wrinkled. My complete lower half feels like I’ve been running. In the past, that turned out to be panic attacks in my sleep.

It came to a head last night: my first vivid nightmare in over 6 months that involved the person who set me over the edge. On top of all mentioned above, I shot awake with tears down my cheeks (I rarely cry), confused, and took moments to realize it was a vivid nightmare. Luckily it wasn’t a full blown night terror.

I hope that was the peak.

I feel so groggy. No amount of coffee will get me out of this stupor. What do I do? Where do I go from here?

This is the morning after having a vivid nightmare in a long time. No professional I’ve worked with has explained how to cope when this happens. This is the first time I’m dealing with one while titrating off of my medication. My old addiction habit of escaping what I’m going through (body and mind) was the first thing I thought to do: just pop an extra pill. No harm, right?

That’s what my healthcare team will tell me.

No. I refuse to keep putting an adhesive bandage on a wound that needs stitches to heal.

Thank you for accepting a lackluster post and reading to this point. The next few days will be self-reflection and coping with the ripple effect of this big rock falling in the calm lake. I’ll eventually share what I did.

Do you experience any of the above? How do you cope?


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