My how things have changed!
Awhile back, I started having occasional nights where I would wake up in a sweat. Besides the obvious fact that I was covered in many layers, I started to suspect that there were some hormonal issues at work. Thankfully those nights didn't come around often, but when they did they were very disruptive. How could someone who had been cold her whole life suddenly wake up in a sweat? It was rather disorienting. Kind of like waking up with a different face. Who am I if not the cold one?? Then, there was this slow but steady increase in my daily base temperature. It wasn't hot flashes exactly (although I have had some of those too), but rather like I was growing warmer by the day. Was this a new thing?
First, it was the flannel sheets. As much as I loved the softness and the feeling of getting into a warm bed, I could no longer handle the warmth at night.
Then, it was the comforter. We had a down comforter for several years and decided maybe it was time to trade it in for a lighter version.
All of the tossing and turning was really bothering my back, so my doctor recommended sleeping with a pillow between my knees (which by the way is NOT what you want when you are hot and tossing and turning). This restlessness and back discomfort also led my husband and me to suspect that it was time for a new mattress. Goodbye to my favorite life-changing mattress!
The new mattress did not seem to fix the problem, in fact, I was having even more difficulty sleeping. Perhaps it was time for a new pillow. Farewell special pillow of my past! Welcome to the long line of new pillows on my bed (or tryouts as I liked to call them).
As I finally settled into my new mattress, pillow, and bedding; I realized that the morning light was really starting to bother me and waking me up well before I was ready (especially after not sleeping well at night), so a sleep mask was added to my nightly routine.
Maybe because I always slept well and didn't notice, but I now also realized my husband snored. Not all the time, not loudly; but enough to be irritating. A gentle nudge was usually enough to stop him, but I can tell you when I was tossing and turning the snoring didn't seem all that mild and my nudge wasn't always so gentle. Ear plugs? Separate beds? Different rooms? What's next?
As all of these changes piled up, it became a bit ridiculous. My bedside had become cluttered with the detritus of my sleep issues- sleep mask, socks (sometimes need them, sometimes can't stand them), water (all that sweating is dehydrating), Kindle for middle of night reading, phone for when the Kindle doesn't work, extra blanket (you never know), various types of sleepwear (depending on what my personal thermostat was), extra pillows, ice packs, hot packs, fan, and the inevitable tangle of sheets and blankets. I finally had to accept--
It's not you, my sweet bed, it's me. And a nasty case of declining estrogen. Yikes, it appears I am in the PERIMENOPAUSAL ZONE!!