writing

Exhaustion Sickness

At least it held off until I was safely parked.

On a call, early morning, less than 4 hours of sleep that night,

Still recovering from a weekend of 40 plus hours of work,

Needing to stay awake, a nutri-grain bar and ice cold water,

I thought it would do the trick, and I was wrong.

Sleep, Sleep, It’s what I need.

Slurring my words, dizziness, and nausea,

all three setting in. Then my eyes filled with tears.

So damn exhausted. “Are you okay?” I hear.

I utter out no, resting my head against the wheel.

The insignia on my car horn blurred.

Sleep, Sleep, It’s what I need.

I knew I was in trouble, but it wasn’t over yet.

“Do you need us to call 911?” “No, I need sleep.”

Helped by two managers, I stumbled through the door,

we found our way to a quiet room.

Still confused, tired and nauseous,

I was too sick to be embarrassed any more.

Sleep, sleep, it’s what I need.

My husband arrived to drive me home.

The drive back was no easier,

waves of sickness between mini naps.

My eyes bruised from the nausea,

my face swollen too. Heavy eyelids,

Sleep, sleep, it’s what I need.


I was lucky; I made it safely to a place where people could help. I forget I’m no longer young, and not able to bounce back like I did when I was in my twenties. This was a lesson for me, a scare for my family, and I hope it reaches someone who may need to hear it. Please, learn from me, don’t drive when you’re tired.

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