Define "Rough Patch"

I came back from the sleep study with my eyes wide open. I was terrified of having to put the Monkey on the CPAP machine for each nap and when he went to bed. It was going to be an uphill battle. Make that war. I wasn’t looking forward to it.

But as I drove home, I kept remembering things the doctors had told me about sleep apnea:

  • Waking up with a start in the middle of the night,
  • Sleeping for a long time but never feeling rested,
  • Snoring very loudly,
  • Being grouchy all the time,
  • Easily overwhelmed,
  • Relationships take a turn for the worse.

None of these, aside from the first point, sounded like the Monkey. But the Hubbs hit every point. By the time I got home, I was convinced he had sleep apnea. But how to convince him?

The Hubbs has never been a good sleeper. When we first met, we worked on a 4-day workweek and on the first day of every weekend, I swear he’d sleep in until at least noon and then want to stay indoors all say in his pjs. We’d drive each other nuts: I’d be going stir-crazy and he’d be annoyed with me for my inability to just stay home and do nothing.

After the Monkey was born, it got worse. Hubbs is a light sleeper, so he took to wearing ear plugs at night. But he’d wake up — or would ALMOST be asleep — when I’d get out of bed to feed/soothe the Monkey at night. His mood began to darken as the days passed. We’d go for days, barely speaking. Him because he was angry about something, me because I didn’t want to set the volcano off.

This isn’t the man I married.

I’m convinced: The Hubbs has sleep apnea. He has ALL the signs. So when I get home, I lay out all the informational brochures the doctors gave us for the Monkey, and I pull up more stuff on the Internet and I sit the Hubbs down and show it to him.

And he says “Maybe.”

But I held firm. I was convinced. I was on a mission. He HAD sleep apnea. He HAD to. Because if he didn’t, and I didn’t get my Hubbs back, well … I couldn’t take much more of the stranger I was living with.

So I was persuasive. I cajoled. I begged. I ordered.

Bottom line, he didn’t want to go to his doctor. They would just tell him to cut down on the drinks, lose weight, and sleep more, which he was already trying to do. Plus, he didn’t like his doctor.

After another two weeks of me endlessly hounding him about it, he agreed that maybe he would go see my doctor about it. Eventually he relented and went. He hadn’t even gotten through his list of symptoms before she cut him off and told him she thought he had sleep apnea and ordered a sleep study for him.

As it turned out, I was right. The Hubbs has sleep apnea. And after about a week on the machine, I started to see a big difference.

I had my husband back.


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