Tag Archives: sleeplessnes


Wanted – someone to take over all my household duties so that I can focus on all this promotion stuff.  Yesterday I sent out 70 book update emails and added a personalized note at the end of each one.  Today I drafted an update letter for those that I don’t have e-mail addresses or that should get a written letter like my doctors.  I just finished 29 letters and envelopes, signing them and putting postage on them for tomorrow’s mail.  This task is cumbersome for a healthy person.

I am already exhausted because I didn’t get much sleep last night but I didn’t even try to take a nap.  On the rare occasion that I can nap and really sleep, I wake up in another world.  Often that world is the world of the dream I was in before I woke up.  I have been plowing through the day mostly sitting here at the computer doing none physical tasks and tasks that I can easily get my brain to do.

This afternoon I took a much-needed break from everything (the computer, what I needed to do and how tired I was) and went to visit a friend.  We sat on her front porch and talked for over two hours and probably could have kept on talking except it was approaching the dinner hour.  Thank you Loretta for a wonderful visit and a chance to escape everything that I would have forced myself to do during those lovely hours spent outdoors had I chosen to stay home.

I am heading to put my feet up and do nothing for the rest of the evening.  I have a Skype interview with a fellow blogger tomorrow morning.  I will post on how that went.

Cot vs traditional mattress for sleeping

Someone searched “cot vs traditional mattress for sleeping” and landed at my blog.  For me a traditional mattress is not an issue because I cannot tolerate the formaldehyde and other chemicals in traditional mattresses.  I also don’t want to worry about all the money I spend on one being thrown out the window if something should happen and it gets mold on it.

A cot is not my favorite form of sleeping but it served me well when I needed it.  After returning home from Dallas in 2003 my bed was an old cot with a wire mesh.  I placed numerous blankets (cotton) on it to serve as a mattress.  I would climb into bed and immediately I was in a cocoon.  My body would cause the mesh wires to sag in the middle and envelop me.  If I rolled over I would hit my leg on the metal bar that surrounded the frame.  I had never been to a chiropractor in my life.  The aches in my back from the lack of support forced me to begin seeing one as well as an acupuncturist to relieve the muscle pain.   The benefit to the cot was that I could sleep without reacting to anything.   Several years later I experimented with an air mattress that I had aired out for a long time.  It was heaven.

I have tried to use an organic mattress with wool inside as the fire-retardant.  I immediately got a mold reaction.  Was it from the cotton not being treated for fungus?  Was I also reacting to the wool?  I had to get rid of it and send it back.  It took some cajoling but the company agreed to take it back with a 20% restocking fee and it cost me about $100 to ship it back.

For me it is a simple decision.  I had to choose what was safest for me.  I have friends that have slept on cots and have managed air mattresses after airing them out for a length of time.  I also have friends that can tolerate organic cotton mattresses.  Others have managed a type of latex mattress.  Not every product works for everyone.  While my air mattress is much better than the cot I had, it is not a warm and soft pillow top mattress like I used to have and miss very much.

My metal cot and blanket mattress.

Sleeping on Blankets

What do other multiple chemical sensitive and mold sensitive sufferers sleep on?  I wondered about that.  When I came from Dallas and moved into my new safe home, I did not have a bed.  I couldn’t tolerate all the chemicals in traditional mattresses.  My only option:  an old metal army cot my husband managed to find and clean for me and cotton blankets.  It took five or six cotton blankets folded in half or thirds depending on the size of the blanket to make my mattress.  The downside, once I crawled in, I immediately sank to the middle.  I was always tossing the blankets in the dryer for two reasons.  The first being to help with dust mites and the second to fluff up the fibers.  The first night’s sleep on those blankets was heavenly, they were warm and soft and fluffy.  By the next night they were cold and matted together.

I ventured out and ordered a wood bed frame and a cotton futon type of organic mattress.  I had it made especially without flame retardant chemicals (you will need a doctor’s prescription for this).  When the mattress arrived it had a very distinct odor about it.  I phoned the company and was told it would need to air out for a couple of weeks.  Since it was summer time, I took it out during the day in the hot sun.  By the third week, I still would get my mold reaction whenever I put my face into the mattress.  I had to send it back which not only cost a restock fee but cost a fortune to send it back by freight.

The cot with the sagging  wires and hard blankets continued to be my bed for a very long time.  One day when visiting a doctor of mine I mentioned the mattress problem.  He said many of his mold patients had resorted to buying air mattresses and letting them off gas in the sun and heat of summer before they could use them.  I was possibly reacting to the organic mattress because organic cotton is not sprayed with fungicide and therefore can have mold spores in it.

My husband and I purchased an air mattress and baked it in the sun for quite a long time.  Then I finally tried it.  I was in heaven.  It was firm and soft.  It didn’t sag in the middle thus alleviating all the bank pain I had been suffering.  Air mattresses, however, are not meant to be used as every day mattresses.  After about a year, they develop a slow leak (which we can never find to fix) or a baffle breaks leaving a huge lump in the middle of the bed.

Aerobed makes a pvc free bed called Performa Lite and there is Kelty Sleep Eazy pvc free air mattress.

I am curious, what do others use or tolerate?

Daily Posting

I thought I would be able to post daily to my blog.  I have come to realize that my body will decide how often I post.  I have several good days and then a bad day or two.  This is day two of bad days.  I have had a constant headache since yesterday.  Is it the high pollen count and I am being affected by it because my shots have not totally kicked in yet?  Or is it the quality of sleep I am getting?  I also suffer from trigeminal neuralgia due to all the sinus infections and bone infections I encountered from my mold exposure.  The nerves could also be acting up.

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Thank you all for visiting my blog and I look forward to being able to post more excerpts from my upcoming book.


Thank you Melatonin.  I have had two nights where I am in more of a twilight sleep than anything else.  It is as if I were asleep and yet awake because I was thinking of things and worrying about things while not yet really alert.  I have had this problem of restless sleep and insomnia since I became ill.  Finally I gave in and took a melatonin last night.  I finally feel a little better and will probably need to make sure I take it for a while to ensure continued sleep.  In 2004 I was having a particularly bad time with sleep and insomnia.  A quote from my book:

“Sleep which had begun to get better was out of control.  I would fall asleep late, wake up at 4:00 a.m. unable to return to sleep.   Most of the time I would be awake all day and through the next night and day before I could sleep again.  This was a regular pattern.  I would be up for sometimes thirty-six hours before I would sleep eight.”

In 2004 I had begun being sent to medical appointments for the defense in regard to my workers’ compensation claim.  Sleep problems had become a way of life since  becoming ill but thought I had gotten them under control.  The stress from the illness, the appointments and my fear of the future had taken hold.  This pattern of sleeping eight hours and being awake for sometimes 36 continued for quite some time.