Last night was my first night at home using my new CPAP machine. Wow. There’s a bit of a learning curve.

First, the machine wants me to breathe more than I want to. It wants me to take more and deeper breaths, and it signals it’s displeasure with my slow shallow breathing by making the mask quiver: that is going to take some getting used to. Last night, I’d go along with it for awhile, but then it’d just get to be so much work. It’s easier to be still. So I’d start “fighting” it. (If I didn’t have a mask over my nose and mouth, I would have yelled at it about cooperation and playing nice … I know. It’s supposed to make me breathe, that’s the whole point. Still. It’s going to take some time for us to feel like partners.)

Then there’s the humidifier. Did you know that you need to fill the tank with water for the humidifier to work? Otherwise, morning brings a very dry nose and mouth. It felt like I’d been up all night shouting myself hoarse at a video game. (Yes, I speak from experience. Both staying up all night and making myself hoarse by yelling at a video game I’m playing.) I need to integrate the CPAP into my morning and bedtime routines. Fill the tank and clean the tank and mask every day.

I also rediscovered that I drool when I sleep. Not much of a problem, wipe it away with your hand or on the pillow when it starts bothering you, right? Except that THERE’S A MASK IN THE WAY! So it doesn’t automatically get wiped on the pillowcase. No, you need to remove the mask (or lift it up if you’re feeling daring), wipe it away, and replace the mask, making sure you get a good seal or the CPAP doesn’t work. (Of course, without a good seal I wouldn’t have to fight about breathing rates, but I’m trying to be a good patient.) Then, just as you start settling in again … more drool!

The last thing I’m going to talk about today is my dog. He’s a 10-12 pound Yorkie-Poo with a very cute face and short little legs. Meaning: he can’t jump up on my bed by himself, but I’m a sucker when he steers those puppy-dog eyes my way. I have an ottoman next to my bed for him to jump onto and from there he can get on the bed. Usually. Last night, he woke me up twice by yipping and pawing at my arm. He’d gotten down, the CPAP hose fell across the ottoman, and his way up was blocked. Yes, I picked him up. Yes, I moved the hose for him. He also woke me up a few times barking and growling so much I thought there was a stranger in the house. There was – the CPAP hose.

I’m going to try routing it a different way tonight. Wish me luck!

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