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We heard a noise out in the street.  It was 12:15 a.m.  It was a terrible noise.  No, not screaming,  not gunfire, not an explosion, not of a baby crying or an ostrich attacking a peacock.  No, this was a different kind of terrible.  We have new(ish) neighbors and they were unloading some things from a pick up truck at yes, 12:15 a.m!  It was horrible because I had actually been sleeping.  I’m almost never asleep yet by then, but this night I was.  So, we shut the windows and turned back on the air conditioning to drown out the sound.  Then, it happened…12:30, 1:00, 1:30, 2:00, 2:30, 3:00, 3:30, 4:00, 4:30, 5:00, 5:30…and at some point after 5:30 I fell back asleep.  For the very first time in my life I experienced insomnia.

Please, don’t stop reading here or begin to think of your best “how to fall back asleep” tricks.  It was only one night and what I learned seemed to help me a lot.  Also, like with anxiety, I don’t begin to think I know anything compared to some of you have danced with these monsters individually or as a tag team.

You’ve heard of the term “Clean and Sober.”  Those are two good things to be but they are not synonymous.  Have you ever wondered why those who struggle with addiction, go to prison, go through withdrawal, come out “clean” (granted, some or many get drugs on the inside), and go back to drugs?  How many times do you see or hear of people get “clean” only to use again?  Further, have you seen or heard of people who stop doing one drug fall into the traps of another?  The reason (or at least “a” reason) is that they are clean…not sober.

Sober is having the hurts healed that fueled the addiction in the first place.  When we are hurt, that hurt goes a number of places.  As the hurts pile up (or if one or two is significant/traumatic enough) they manifest themselves into tangible things.  Addictions, rage, depression, anxiety, hyper activity, hyper performance focus, are all a result of the hurts in our lives.  Sadly, what happens more often than not is that we focus on these manifestations of hurt rather than the hurt itself.  We then fail as we have not addressed the main fuel for our destructive fire.  So we end up with…guess what?  More hurts.

Back to me (these posts never stray far).  I have mentioned that over the past 6 months or so I have worked a lot on me.  I have gotten rid of a few unhealthy things (nothing major: pop, caffeine, artificial sweeteners, etc.) and added some good things (better diet, more activity, more family time).  Things that I needed to take care of that I had pushed off were scratched off my ongoing “to do” list (which was really more of a “You stink because you haven’t” list).  After all of these changes how did I feel about the overall improvements I had made?  Hmmmm, ’bout the same.  You see, I had become “clean” but not comforted.

Lately (in my last several posts) I have been perusing as to what hurts were affecting me more.  Was it the passing of Trey and subsequent grief?  Was it the bubbling up of lifetime hurts that have never really been comforted?  Both?  I have mentioned the fact that I was committed to the fight and was going to continue on in my quest to be healthy and have my hurts comforted.  I still am and will continue to do so.  I even used a good bit of that night in bed to list a lot of those hurts and keep/put them in a file for when I get to express them and have them comforted.

So, little old me seems to have brought on my own anxiety and insomnia by getting rid of the other things that had grown out of a result of my past hurts.  Having not yet healed the hurts, my emotions found other things to replace them.

What is beautiful is that God used the time I was lying in bed to show me this, to teach/remind me of all of these things, to encourage me to push on, to help me to understand what was going on in my life, He and I had a great planning/grief session of our own.

Rachel and I have continued to talk and plan things out.  We took the family to our orientation at the Highmark Caring Place and will begin sessions at the end of this month.  For now, I think I’m going to pick “eating too much steak” as my manifestation of hurt (it may not work that way) until I can become “Clean…and Comforted.”

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