The worst feeling in the world - and one that I get, often - is tossing and turning, trying to fall asleep, knowing that it won't happen. It's made worse by the knowledge that I have to wake up at 6AM tomorrow, and that even if I were to fall asleep right now I'd be running on 5 hours of sleep. I know myself well. I know I won't be in bed until 2.
I know this isn't a feeling unique to the medical profession, but it feels worse knowing that I have to interact with a different person every 15 minutes tomorrow. The schedule demands that I'm in top form at all times, an impossible feat for any person, more impossible for me when I'm tired.
So, I debate. Pop 50 milligrams of benadryl? Gives me a horrendous sleep hangover in the morning. The few times I've overslept have been because I tried that particular trick. I could steal prescription sleep aids (Rozerem, Lunesta, Ambien) from the sample closet, but that's a dangerous path that leads nowhere I want to go. I've tried it a few times. Those meds treat the symptom, not the disease.
In the end, I'll likely sit on the couch with the lights off, blanket drawn up around my knees, TV flickering in the dark, and wait for the King of Dreams to beckon. It'll be a long night. It'll be a longer day.