Sunday marked one month since Jackie died. Time trickery is definitely at work, because it feels like more than that, but it also feels like she was just here. Like if I tried hard enough, I could smell her perfume on my hair, lingering after a recent hug.

Last night when I eventually fell asleep I was trapped in nightmares, just like I have been every night for the last few weeks. I was held down. I tried to scream, but my mouth was muffled by unseen hands. I couldn’t escape. Things played out, over and over. I couldn’t wake up. No one would help me. No one could.

I wake up from nightmares traumatized and resentful. Exhausted. Sleep used to be safe. Now I struggle to fall asleep, and then when I do, I’m tortured.

After Maddie died, I took hardcore sleeping pills during the first few weeks. I had to stop once I became pregnant with Annie, and that’s when my insomnia started. I couldn’t handle sleeping at night, when everyone else was slumbering. But I could sleep during the day with no problem. I realized eventually that I slept better when Mike was conscious because I felt like he could protect me from the nightmares. Even if he couldn’t prevent them, he could wake me up when they started. It was irrational but it worked.

I can’t sleep during the day now, not with Annie around. I need help. I need sleep advice. I so very badly need rest.