A Ton of Bricks

Week four and, "This is where the story really starts!" The Interferon / Ribararin has hit me like the proverbial ton of bricks!

Sleep is an adventure - I never know what I'm going to get! I've been getting to bed earlier, but I still have to get up at 03:15 so the best I've had in one session has been six and a half hours last night when I went to bed at 20:30. And what a sleep I have! Sometimes I'm out cold from hitting the sheets to the alarm going off and other nights I can be working all night in technicolor dreams! Trekking through green jungle headlands swept by tidal waves, labouring on the tracks - one night I seemed to spend all night trying to email my dreams to myself to so that I could file them like mp4 videos! Another morning I woke up after missing the train because I had to help my wife to bring the washing in... and I mean we got off the train to bring the washing in the off clothesline (which was right next to the station) and we were stranded on the platform holding baskets of washing whilst the train went off with my daughter on it. One second I'm fumbling for my mobile phone to phone her to arrange for us to meet at the next station and the next my wife wakes me getting out of bed.

That was weird! There's years of therapy in studying my dreams! I think I've been a husband and Dad so long that its a core part of my personality.

I can joke about this but the tiredness is a major part of the challenge of this treatment. Not just the physical tiredness, I think that is a seperate aspect, but the washed-out lack of drive. After a reasonable amount of sleep last night, I can at least countenance actually accomplishing something today. It forces home the physiological need we have for sleep and dreaming - I wonder if this side-effect is caused by the drugs affecting my sleep patterns so that I'm not getting enough of the right *kind* of sleep?

These psychological side-effects are one of the most unsettling parts of the treatment, it feels as if it is messing with my perception of myself. I have to just show a bit of moral fibre: is my self image, my self esteem, so fragile that I doubt my own worth because of the external effects of a drug? I know who I was, I know what I have done, what I am capable of. I know that, after this course of treatment is over, I will continue to do extraordinary things because the external influence will be gone.

For now I just need to weather the storm, resist the negative aspects and learn from the experience.
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