My husband, Jack is sometimes a restless sleeper. And I’m a please-don’t-bother-me-I-am-in-desperate-need-of-sleep sleeper. Being mom and having baby sleeping in the room with us, my ears are always on when I wish they were off. And when I get woke up needlessly, I get cranky. I try really hard not to because it’s caused arguments with me and Jack in the past but let’s face it, I’m not exactly friendly at 3:30am. Good grief, I have to get up in two and a half hours.
Another thing you need to know, I sleep with an air purifier machine in the room simply for the white noise it makes. I can’t sleep unless I have white noise. That stems from my days working graveyard and living in an apartment building – I can’t sleep unless there is a fan or something mellow and unchanging going the whole night. And unfortunately, I have the baby trained for that too because he can’t sleep unless there is white noise .
So, last night, I woke with my husband half sitting up in bed. I tried to ignore him and go back to that beautiful dark place where I was floating but he kept moving, laying down, and sitting back up again. I finally asked him in the nicest way possible if everything was okay and he said he kept hearing a DVD player turning on and off. We don’t have a DVD player in the room and so I told him that it was probably the air purifier making different noises that I too had noticed because it’s getting old . Whatever. I tried to go back to sleep.
Next thing I know he is up playing with the air purifier, turning it off and now the baby is awake and screaming at the rail. He is up out of bed for a while comforting him at the crib. When he comes back to bed, he crawls over the top of me instead of going around, kicking me in the process. I’m trying really hard to keep my cool at this point.
The next thing I know he is standing over me bent over, listening. Good grief, what the heck? He is totally tripping on a sound. I told him that if we aren’t in danger, what’s the big deal and good grief, we both need our sleep, let’s go back to sleep. He was tripping. He wouldn’t stop tripping so I grabbed my pillow, favorite blanket, cell phone to set the morning alarm and headed to go sleep with our 6-year old.
I just get comfortable when he comes, apologies, and asks me to come back to bed. I don’t say anything but pack up and return to my now cold bed. He is still restless for a while and I count back-wards from 399 all the odd numbers to go back to sleep. What? It clears my head and gets me tired. Try it sometime.
Then I dream. All of his activity was a trigger for me.
We are in a house in the middle of the night and I’m holding the baby. He comes to get the baby from me and for some reason I put his pants on and stick my hand in his pocket. I knew immediately what it was that I felt. It was a meth pipe, and in the other pocket, the little coin-bag of meth. Usually when I have dreams of him falling off the wagon, I’m extremely upset, even violent, and my dream is a storm of emotion. Most of those feeling I felt when I did catch him about two years ago (yeah, we’ll get into that later). He is on his last chance already in real life – I catch him again and we are done. This totally manifested in my dream and I calmly told him we were done and of course, he became the emotional mess in my dream. I proceeded to tell everyone in the house we were in, showing them the pipe and bag (which is basically what I did when I caught him – yes, I’ll tell you about that later), told my family, and told his family. But this time I was strangely calm and literally began figuring out what my next steps were going to be in leaving him – literally, in my dream, going through the logistics of leaving him. What about my son’s school? What am I taking? Where am I going, etc. The whole time he is begging me not to – IN MY DREAM.
Good grief, why am I telling you things. Well, for several points:
- How my husband sleeps was always an indicator to me whether he has used or not. Coming to bed not tired, restless kicking feet, jerking of body and hands, TRIPPING over nothing…. Those are all suspicious activities to me with him because this man, when not high, can usually sleep through ANYTHING. I don’t know what he real deal was last night, but his actions were triggers for me and sent me into a real scenario when I slept. I didn’t think at all that he was actually tweaking when we were trying to figure out what he was tripping on, but in the back of my mind, I guess, the trigger was pulled.
- I can’t tell you how real the pipe and the bag felt when put my hands in his pockets (weird, why was I wearing his pants). I knew exactly what it was without even seeing it. I know that steams from me finding pipes in his pockets way back when we first got together and he was using and I wasn’t (before I fell off the wagon – yeah, I’ll tell you about that too). I’ll never forget when I found his pipe when he fell off the wagon – yeah, I’ll tell you about that too…. We have a lot still to talk about.
- Telling everyone in my dream that he was using is also significant because that is how I dealt with him when I caught him a couple of years ago; I decided that I wasn’t going to deal with it alone and instead of “protecting” him (which is just enabling really). It made dealing with the shock and horror of having that drug back in my life after almost 5 years and realizing that it was what was causing so much heartache and grief (I was NOT happy with our marriage at this time) made me violently angry. But I decided not to deal with it alone and so I first told our family and then later some friends. It made dealing with it a lot easier and more accountability for him.
When the alarm went off, I hit the bed from my dream hard. I woke up exhausted after all the activity of the night and my brain was swarming with this real dream. I first prayed about it. I can easily be consumed by my own negative thoughts and that is not constructive or healthy so I gave this concern and stress first to God. Then, I’ve been able to think about it off and on all day and put the lessons and points into words for you so you can see how deeply meth will always be rooted in me. Doesn’t mean I’ll ever use again, but scar is there forever.
I was quiet during the morning just from being tired. I mentioned the dream to my husband and he’s known that I’ve dreamt about him relapsing so he didn’t seem too surprised. He didn’t say anything about it. I know that meth consumes his dreams sometimes to but he doesn’t go into the details.
Did it make me want to go through his pockets and check his drawers for signs? Nah. I don’t have time for that. Plus, it was just a dream.
The thought I want to leave you today from the Bible is Ephesians 4:31 and 32, and is something that I think is so important in dealing with issues from the past that creep into our present relationships. Obviously, it’s something we deal with and you might too if you find yourself in a relationship with a past. It’s hard! It’s been two years since Jack fell off the wagon and still his relapse is an issue. But the Bible has advice and comfort for relationship issues that points us back to relationships that God has intended for us. “Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” God FORGAVE us and it is so important we remember this when we deal with our own relationships. I treasure this text because it is so relevant to restoring our relationship that almost destructed in the past. The future is about moving on.