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Pills and schedules

Before my last visit to the hospital I had a schedule that, for most people, would have seen totally bogus and uncommon, but it’s probably not so uncommon in the geek community (to the point that XKCD talked about it).

Even though some of my relatives thought that it meant I slept for the biggest part of the day (which I didn’t, I woke up at 14 almost every other day, but I was going to sleep at 7am..), it wasn’t a bad schedule for me; I’m most productive when it’s not hot and humid outside, and during the day here it’s both.

Of course in the hospital I wasn’t able to keep such a schedule as you’re forced the hospital’s, but that’s the least. And I wanted to keep a more local schedule at home too, just for the sake of not having to switch schedule again when surgery-time arrived.

But there’s a difference between trying to keep a local schedule and being forced one. Right now, I have to take four pills in a day: one of Deursil 300 during breakfast, one of Lansox 30 at mid morning, and again Deursil, this time 450, once during lunch and once during dinner. This means that I cannot skip breakfast, and I cannot have a breakfast too near the lunch.

The past couple of days, when I write, I woke up at 11, and it was a true mess as I’d have to eat late, and skip a mid-afternoon snack. Very bad for my health.

So instead, I’ve now to force myself on a very local schedule, waking up at 8am and going to sleep as early as possible. Which is a problem as eve though I do listen to podcasts before going to sleep, two of my favourite ones won’t be available until September (Real time with Bill Maher – which I hope will be available again for Europeans too once the new season begins – and Friday Night Comedy), plus it doesn’t help because I’d tend to just listen to podcasts for hours rather than sleep.

One thing that lets me sleep at any hour is the sound of rain on my rooftop. Unfortunately finding recordings of that isn’t simple, I have seen something on the iTunes store (no-DRM, which makes it not evil), but the price is a bit high (€10) for the task. Now I just tried requesting Magnatune’s Relaxing compilation and I’ll see if I find some author that might help me sleeping, in there.

I wish I could go back to my own schedule 🙁

Comments 2
  1. I can certainly identify! I recently had a I had a cycle of antibiotics to take, four times a day — once every 6 hours or as close to it as I could get.Six hours apart medicine sure plays hell with a sleep schedule too! By the time I woke up enough to take my medicine, I’d be up for several hours. So I basically ended up sleeping two 3-4 hour blocks a day, sometimes with a third nap of a couple hours to catch up what I had missed, never getting a solid 8 hours. I was DEFINITELY glad when I took the last of those Friday, and am still relishing actually being able to sleep for a full 8 hour, even 10 hour the first day, block. =8^)What was almost as bad was that it disturbed my stomach so I had to eat something with it. I normally eat a big meal at one end of the day, and a snack at the other, before bed, sometimes with another snack somewhere in the middle too, so eating four times a day, I felt like I was always eating!So yes, I know all about medication and schedules right about now.As for the rain, there’s a shoutcast station I used to listen to… seems my *.pls file isn’t working any more tho, and shoutcast doesn’t seem to list it when I try to search for it…But try searching for ambient, new age, meditation, chillout, etc. Hopefully you’ll find a decent station that can put you to sleep, then either capture a session of it or use streamripper, if you want/need something for when you are offline (say at the hospital or whatever) is a nice one I’ve been listening to (and sleeping to) recently, 256kbps, all creative-commons licensed music too, so you can record it without worrying about legal or ethical issues. It’s not nature sounds, but it’s “ambient” and relaxing enough at low volume to do the trick for me.For nature sounds… this one came up top of a google for ‘”nature sounds” mp3’, looks like what you want, they have samples free to download, and you can pay (variety of payment methods, processed by paypal so you should be fine) for CD length, direct-download. Canadian, by the URL.http://nature-downloads.nat

  2. Oh, something else I just remembered as well. Have you heard of binaural beats? Check the wikipedia link below for the details, but the idea is to pipe two different sound frequencies, one into each ear, separated such that they produce a third frequency below the normal audible range of hearing. Thus, it works best with headphones, so the sound to each ear can be entirely isolated from the other.The idea in this case is to create a frequency following response, starting with a beat similar to the brain-wave frequency of a waking individual, then slowing it down to the natural sleeping frequency… then bringing it back up to waking after a suitable sleep period. It’s a bit more involved then that, but that’s the general idea.At the bottom of the wikipedia page there’s links to various binaural beat software, including Gnaural, which I downloaded and compiled to try out here. It has a GUI that lets you setup the beat over time scheme on a graph. Rather neat, actually. It has a masking sound that it loops over the top as well. Of course, you can change it if you wish, and perhaps putting a rain loop in there would be about the best for you. (You might even be able to use a sample of that nature sounds site and loop it… for free.)How does it work? Well, I had somewhat mixed results, mainly because wearing the headphones to sleep didn’t work so well for me. The beat didn’t hurt my going to sleep, but I can’t say for sure that it helped, and when I awoke, the headphones had come out of my ears, so I don’t know how long I had the effect going. I often listen to music going to sleep, but not thru headphones, which are really necessary to get the proper isolation and beat effect here, so I gave up on it at that time, and haven’t gotten back to try it again. Someday…But I think it has a pretty decent chance of working well if you’re the type that already fairly often goes to sleep with the headphones on.It should be worth at least the time to read the wikipedia page, and go from there if you want. As I said, I was able to build gnaural here, without a problem. IIRC it’s GTK2 based.

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