I didn’t sleep well last night again. I thought/hoped I would sleep better now the interview is out of the way, but obviously not. First I couldn’t get to sleep, although I felt incredibly tired. I think I didn’t have enough “introvert alone time” after “peopling” for so long. Then I woke up about 5.30am feeling anxious. I can’t even remember what I was anxious about, although I know it was connected with the other job interview, the one I had last week and haven’t heard back from yet where I wanted the job more than the job interview I had yesterday. I think I was worried about being able to take off Jewish festivals and “early Fridays” in the winter when Shabbat (the Jewish Sabbath) starts early. I did eventually fall asleep again, and slept through until gone 10.30am and still woke up exhausted and burnt out. I don’t know if it’s depression, autistic burnout or medication side-effects (or a combination of the three) that makes me so tired in the mornings, but it’s hard to know what I can do about it. I know this increasingly feels like a sleep/burnout blog, which I guess is good, as it means the depression is less of an issue during the day and my other autism and social anxiety symptoms are under control (albeit probably because I’m not doing much that is social), but I’m not sure how interesting it is for anyone else.


I try not to use the word “triggering” regarding myself, as I feel that it trivialises the term for people who really have c-PTSD (just as I don’t like people saying they’re “depressed” when they mean vaguely down, or they’re “OCD” when they mean they’re neat and tidy). Still, some things are more likely to upset me and start negative thoughts than others. These upsetting thoughts can be vaguely obsessional, in the correct sense this time of being hard to get rid of, spiralling in on themselves and making me anxious and agitated. These kinds of thoughts tend to come from newspapers, news sites and the dreaded Twitter (Twitter is a bit like swimming in raw sewage that occasionally tells a good joke). I’m most vulnerable to these types of thoughts when feeling burnt out and mildly depressed… but I’m more likely to encounter these things when procrastinating (online or leafing through the hardcopy newspapers at home) because I’m feeling burnt out and mildly depressed, as happened today. I actually coped OK with coming across them today and dismissed said thoughts reasonably easily, but it can be difficult sometimes.

I probably should delete my Twitter account, just as I deleted my Facebook account seven years ago, but I think I would still be able to see other people’s Tweets, which is the dangerous bit and I have vague thoughts that I could use my Twitter account to job hunt or join in with Doctor Who fandom, although if I avoided doing either of those two things during lockdown, the likelihood of doing them afterwards seems very remote.


Achievements: after a lot of procrastinating (see above about the risks of this) I wrote a first draft of this week’s devar Torah (Torah thought). I managed to write a thought for every week this year, excluding a couple of weeks when Yom Tov (festivals) fell on Saturday and the regular Torah reading was postponed. The thoughts were about 600 to 1,000 words long, which is longer than it sounds (for comparison, I think most of my blog posts are around 1,000 words), and I do try to do some research for them rather than just rely on secondary sources; even if I find something in a secondary source, I like to trace the reference back to the original source in the Talmud or the Midrash or whatever, if I can find it and if my Hebrew/Aramaic is up to it (Sefaria.org is a blessing).

I didn’t manage a lot else. The main thing was a half-hour walk. I did some Torah study – as yesterday, listening to a shiur (religious class) for fifty minutes or so as I was too depressed to read much. Even so, I struggled to concentrate and drifted in and out of it. I think I should consider listening to shiurim more on days when I feel depressed and/or burnt out, although I need to work out how to get shiurim from YU Torah Online on my phone or ipod.

Otherwise, I watched TV: another episode of The Civil War (after talking of gore here the other day, there were some graphic photographs of wounded soldiers that I couldn’t look at) and I’m about to watch Star Trek Voyager.

EDIT: I forgot to say, I had dinner in the sukkah with my parents and two of their friends. I feel more comfortable with these friends than with some others, but I still was really only eating with them so I could eat in the sukkah. It started raining heavily after a while and we all went in; fortunately I had just about finished my pizza and went upstairs.

18 thoughts on “I’m Only Sleeping

  1. I just could not do Facebook – had to close it down. I have a friend who keeps suggesting I do Instagram but I have managed to refuse so far. Hey, at the risk of being annoying but only wanting to help I’m wondering if you would be interested in researching the relationship between Lithium and selenium. If your medical system is similar to ours in Canada which I think it is they are probably totally ignoring the relationship. Taking a selenium mineral supplement (Selenomethionine) along with lithium can prevent a lot of the unpleasant side effects that occur. Seriously Google this and all sorts of studies will come up in medical journals establishing this fact. I know that the soils in the U.K. are deficient in selenium which effects the nutritional value of food grown there so it is a real possibility you need more. I’ll let you look into the science if you are interested. It’s a really easy supplement to buy online or pick up at a health food store. The positive effects can be dramatic.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh ya I didn’t think about the need for kosher supplements. If you can track down some kosher selenium I think you will find it’s worth it. Do you notice any positive effects from the Omega 3’s?

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          1. I think that’s smart. Do you know anything about your B12 levels? I know that they can be effected by being a vegetarian. I’ve been so envious of people who reduce their anxiety with special forms of B12 (methyl B12) and or folic acid (5mthf or folinic acid) but alas that is not my issue.

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              1. So please don’t worry about that right now. I was just thinking out loud and I might pass on some interesting stuff to you later. A doctor who has helped a lot of kids with autism in the U.S. and happens to be Jewish has done a lot of research on the B12 folic acid stuff. Her name is Dr. Amy Yasko and among other things she looks at the MTHFR polymorphism which is super common in the general population (not a defect just a uniqueness) and in certain Jewish populations. There is so much confusing info out ther with half truths but I can point you to the more reliable stuff if you find the selenium helps. These doctors are bright lights for sure.

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      2. And I’m glad to know I’m not being annoying 🙂 I don’t always pick up on cues and sometimes I irritate or offend without realizing. Or anxiety just causes me to worry about it.

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  2. I deleted Facebook once, then years later, created a new Facebook account. I’m thinking of re-deleting Facebook. Every once in awhile, I’ll find an interesting article, or event, or it will be a decent way to keep in touch with a non-local friend, but lately, it’s just an echo chamber and just generally bad.
    That’s cool re: the d’vrei torah! My Dad was doing something similar for awhile.

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  3. Thanks! I find I have to resist going back on Facebook because I do sometimes miss out on important news because people assume that everyone they know is on it and forget that I’m not.


  4. I dislike Twitter, but enjoy Facebook and keeping in touch with my former students and colleagues. However, I try to keep it “Margaret Lite.”

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