1607 Dang.

The original text for this was more wordy, but I felt like it didn’t match their relationship. I feel like this perfectly encapsulates what needs to be said without saying it.

I just want to talk about these two, but it’s more fun to do it in the comic. Makes me wish I could make pages faster though.

Good lord I’m tired. I really want to type more stuff but I also want to sleep. Maybe I can sleep a little before the page goes up…

Well, I tried to lay down, felt bad when I did and got back up. I’m still super tired, but apparently I’m not allowed to rest. What my problem is I don’t know. It feels like maybe my back is out. I used to be able to make it go back in by stretching but that doesn’t work anymore. I want to lay down so bad but as soon as I do I want to get right back up. What do I need to do to fix this… Sometimes I feel like if I figured out some specific combination of exercises I could fix this every time it happens, but nothing works. I always end up having to just let it run its course. All the combinations of sleep surfaces have been tried. Soft mattress, hard, and mostly the floor. For a couple of months I’ve only been able to sleep wedged between the bed and a pile of crates so I don’t lean too far either way in my sleep. It’s excruciating sometimes, but sometimes it’s not. I don’t know why it’s okay one day and not the next. Sometimes it hurts my hips sometimes it’s perfectly okay. It makes no sense. It seems like my body just randomly does stuff to piss me off half the time anymore.
I actually kind of want to make a little bed for myself that has two planks on either side of my torso. Like a taco holder, or a toaster kind of. I could put a pillow on either side and it would take up a fourth of the space my current setup does. The planks can’t go the length of my body because I need to be able to rotate out. I also bend my legs in my sleep sometimes. so they have to be free to kick around. I’ve actually put a fair amount of thought into this. I’d need some kind of thin bedding because I need a buffer between my hips and the plank. Foam won’t work because it molds to my shape too much. I think it would have to be some kind of thin pillows I could rotate so they wouldn’t get smashed down too much all the time. I was using down pillows at one point in my makeshift bed but after 3 days they were crushed to the point of feeling like the floor. The polyfil pillow was too fluffy all the time. it made me feel like it was pushing me up constantly. I need an in between those two things.
One of the problems with sleeping on my side is that my shoulders are wider than my body by a lot. So as I relax they fold in half and it has messed up my ribcage, In fact, I think my sternum might be permanently damaged. It’s alsmot always inflamed now. I can feel the one rib that isn’t sitting right anymore. It’s the third one down from the top. maybe second. my collar bone makes it hard to count for sure.

I got distractred and forgot what I was tsalking about. Anyway I need to stop thinking and… I don’t know. Something.


Crave, we don’t need an essay from you every time. If you’re tired, sleep. Take care of yourself.

That being said, youm made the right choice about the comic. Sometimes silence speaks volumes.

When the puck did you start calling yourself Jackie?

Jackie is Crave’s name;
Evident here: facebook.com/Jackie.Wohlenhaus

And watch Your shakespearean profanity,
‘Tisn’t polite.

I have trouble sleeping too sometimes. You just have to get used to the fact that abnormal bodies weren’t meant to sleep well like everyone else. I can’t sleep facing down, on my I toss and turn all night long, and sleeping on my back induces some seriously surreal nightmares for some reason.

I’ve found I have the best success sleeping on my back, neck turned with enough pillows to almost be sitting up, like sleeping in a reclining chair. Even then, if I sleep well enough to go through the night, I might still be sore in the morning, and sometimes I’m not.

It’s a crap shoot. Just gotta go with gives the best results the most often.

Your situation sounds awful. I can relate.

I hate to sound like a commercial, but if you can throw some money at this:
1. Visit your nearest “Relax the Back” (TM) store and try out all the recliners.
2. Try a “grandpa pillow” or several.
3. By foam do you mean memory foam? And that hasn’t worked? If you mean regular foam, try a memory foam (the NASA-developed stuff) mattress topper.
4. Get a couple of those body-length bolster pillows.
5. Big bean-bag chair? Dunno about you, but for me the issue with a bean-bag chair is hauling myself out and up. Big bean-bag chair on a DIY platform with a railing?

And if you can’t throw money at it:
6. Change your expectations. If, by hook or crook, you can get at least two hours of sleep at a time, at least three times per 24 hrs, that’s not perfect but, for a while, it will be good enough. Getting enough sleep need not mean 8 solid hours between 11:00 PM and 7:00 AM. Your anxiety about not sleeping is contributing to your not sleeping. 90 to 110 min. gets you through all three stages.
7. Triple- or quadruple-strength chamomile tea. One tea-bag will not do it for me. Google for interactions first.
8. Once you realize you’re not going to get any more sleep for now, stop trying to force yourself. Get up, go pee, fix a snack, walk around, sketch one panel, consciously relax every muscle from head to toe, go back to bed.
9. Take t’ai-ji lessons. Trade artwork (advertising the lessons) to keep this one out of the “throw money” set.

Per point 6: I’m pretty sure you need a full REM cycle for a “proper” sleep. I’m not sure how long that takes for most people, but 2 hours seems kinda short. My point is double-check and adjust time values if necessary. REM is where your brain flushes its RAM cache and stuff, and it’s important for staying sane (literally).

About point 6 and 8, there’s some evidence that the solid 8 hours of sleep pattern commonly recommended might not be natural for humans. Test subjects exposed to long dark night periods and with no external references tend to develop a pattern of 4 hours sleep, 1-2 hours wake, 4 hours sleep. And historical records also hint that this was common practice until a few centuries ago. People would have their “first sleep”, then wake for a couple of hours and be quite active, before the “second sleep”. There should be room for 2-4 full sleep cycles in each 4-hour sleep chunk, unless you’re sleep-deprived and stay in deep sleep for longer than usual.

I sometimes have pain in my lower back. What works for me is to lie on my back with my legs up. I started out putting my feet on the sofa with my back on the floor, but now I usually just prop my feet against a wall, which has the advantage of letting me control how high up they are.

Lying on my back with my legs up puts a gentle stretch on my lower back, with gravity doing the work. All I have to do is lie there, but when I’m doing this to fix my back, it can feel a bit intense after a while.

But this really has fixed my back pain problems for me. If I do it regularly I don’t even get back pain problems. Then I get lazy and stop doing it, and then the back pain returns, because I am kind of an idiot. I should get my act together; when I keep up on this, I can lie there and do the stretch as long as I want and it doesn’t hurt at all.

While I am lying there I watch videos on my Android tablet. I hold it up on my two arms with the elbows locked out, so it’s as little effort as possible to hold it. Sometimes I wish I had Google Glass and I could just lie there with the video projected into my eye and let my arms flop down, but the tablet is working for me so I haven’t bothered to look into Google Glass. I have subscribed to CrunchyRoll and lately I just watch anime while I stretch my back.

I am not a doctor, this is not medical advice. It’s what I do for myself and it works for me.

I wish you well. I hope you can at least get to where you can sleep comfortably… that’s not a small thing.

As always, thanks for making one of my favorite comics.

My grandfather had a similar problem with his back hurting when he laid down so maybe his solution might help you out, Pretty much he wouldn’t use his bed for a bit and just sleep in his recliner, it would keep him for the most part on his back as well as allow him to find an angle that was comfortable.

You basically described buying a coffin to sleep in.

Coffins don’t hold you up sideways, or only have sides in the middle part.

Hospital beds of better quality can have the firmly padded sides equivalent to that of furniture.

There is an aftermarket for such things as well as people who will refurbish and upholster them if needed.

Heck around here there is a place that lets you experiment with a fully automated modular model to figure out what settings are best for you. Mind you it can get $$$ intensive if you need something that is fully automated and reinforced.
But they work with a university sleep study center so there is that option and you get paid to sleep.

Would the planks be removable for when someone else wanted to join you in bed, or would they have to be squashed up too? (just curious, this isn’t a come-on)

I’d imagine having a coffin for a bed would probably discourage that kind of action though, you should steer clear of that option.

Please look up ‘rotated pelvis’ for persistent back pain. If that’s your root cause, a particular exercises may bring relief within a day. It’s not well known even by physical therapists. Muscle relaxant meds will help, of course those are habit forming so it’s a short term thing. Both my spouse and I have suffered this from sports and hot baths give temp relief so we can do our exercises to relax the inner core muscles.

Not my site but useful.

Also how you sit affects this, be careful about sitting with legs crossed and lounging for long with strain in your core muscles or back anything but straight. The idea is to keep the lower back moving with long walks and shorter sleep periods.

Thank You for the Best character development of any comic I’ve seen.

Wow, when you described it, I saw the design in my mind, looks like $20.00 -40.00 in wood, and thin foam rubber over poly-fill core, screwed or stapled securely to the wood. I’ll have to draw it up for you, and email the jpg. Do you have Aany power tools: dagger saw, saber-saw, table saw, electro drill? Anything?
Email my gmail if you have better than a hand saw- though you could do it with that, it’d just take a lot more time.

Jo, you can’t just go head on, you need to side step and get a hold.

Re: pain, Have you tried a chiropractor? If stuff is out of place, it might not go back on its own. Might also see if heat or cold helps, ie hot water bottle/electric blanket or ice pack. Can help. Or, go with the taco holder idea, I suppose.

Two things, aside from my praise of your comic. 1) you might look into a buckwheat pillow for for the padding part (doesn’t crush and doesn’t hold much heat, though a bit harder to find and somethings pricier). 2) you might have some luck with the my pillow from TV, have heard some things. Good luck!

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