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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1124070-Living-With-Apnea
by svrsek
Rated: ASR · Prose · Comedy · #1124070
Humorous essay about living with someone who has a sleeping disorder.
So, my husband, Kevin, has apnea and so far we haven't treated it. I have known it since we met, when he told me a story about how he had fallen asleep sitting up. His friend knew that he frequently did this and was trying to determine if he was sleeping:

Jill: "Are you sleeping?"
Kevin: "No, I am awake."
Jill: "No, you are definitely sleeping."
Kevin: "No. I'm awake."
Jill: "If you are awake, can I throw this ball at you?"
Kevin: "Yes."
Jill: "No. You are sleeping (repeat 5 times)."
Kevin: "No. Throw the ball, I'm awake (repeat 5 times)."
Jill: "Okay (throws ball, which clocks Kevin in the head because he's sleeping and didn't attempt to catch it)."
Kevin: (Awake). "Hey! Why the hell did you do that?"

I was glad that he told me that story early on because it explained a lot of other peculiar behaviors to me. He also snores---A LOT and LOUDLY. It can be tortuous to listen to it because it is not rhythmic, and his breathing sometimes stops for long seconds at a time.

There is no way to really make the snoring stop, but I have noticed that having him roll over on his side or onto his stomach will slow it enough that I can actually get back to sleep. Unfortunately, he is so incoherent that it is difficult to even wake him up to tell him to roll over. I usually have to tell him to roll over about 30 times. He will usually wake up on the 30th "request," which is a cross between an exhausted beg, and a threat to push him out of bed. Naturally, he wakes up mad, and lectures me for not asking him nicely, which I did the first 25 times. On one of his more unusual evenings, we had this conversation:

Me: "Honey, can you please do your devoted wife a beautiful favor and roll over on your side?" (Repeat above 25 more times).
Him: Snore loudly, breath unevenly (repeat every night for 10 more years).
Me: "Roll Over!" (repeat 10 times).
Him: Sitting straight up in bed, "Bark, bark, bark."
Me: Somewhat infuriated, "Are you sleeping???? You better be asleep!"

Apparently, "roll over" had caused him to dream that he was a dog, so he started barking, and yes--he was still sleeping. He had absolutely no recollection of it in the morning.

He frequently has no recollection of many things he says during slumber. He has been doing a lot of parenting in his sleep lately. Last night he started yelling (or it seemed like it because the house was so quiet) some tender directions to our daughter for some sort of activity before I briskly quieted to prevent him from waking up our daughter, which would have been disastrous--for me--because *he* would have slept through the calamity.

Our daughter, Evie, LOVES her daddy and is always looking for an excuse for him to come into her bedroom at night, because she associates daddy with being able to get out of bed. He is a sucker, and sleep-induced stupid, in the middle of the night. There have been several occasions where he went in there at 2 am in response to her cries, took her out of bed, and turned on the TV, as if it was time to get up......then it took me 45 minutes to get her back down. Of course, he was never actually awake, so he immediately went back into bed. Exhausted, I crawled back into bed, only to not fall asleep for another 45 minutes because of his snoring....

It's not easy to wake him up in the morning either. When we met, he had three alarm clocks. He did not actually get up and turn any of them off either. So, if I stayed over, the three alarms would go off for hours while he slept through them.

When I try to wake him up now, he acts like I am the most horrible person alive. I HATE our morning routine, where I have to beg him to get out of bed. But, yesterday he did entertain me. I told him that it was time for him to get into the shower. In his partial slumber, he told me, "I can't. The shower steals my soul."
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