Thought Catalog
September 9, 2011

The Three Times I Took Ambien

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The first time I took Ambien, I worked for an actor and our schedule was bananas. When you’re filming a movie, you have to shoot all night to finish one outdoor nighttime scene. We’d work three or four days from 6pm-6am and then the next couple of days we’d go back to shooting during the day. We bounced back and forth from days to nights like that every week and big surprise, my body did not like it.

After my first few weeks of this, I was so screwed up that I couldn’t fall asleep during the time allotted for sleep. My brain turned to cheese and I constantly felt like I was going to burst into tears.

The on-set doctor heard me complaining and sent me home with a bag of Ambien samples. What she failed to tell me was to read the directions. Maybe she thought that was obvious? Please. I assemble IKEA furniture on the fly. I don’t seek advice from enclosed literature.

Well! Turns out the most important thing about Ambien is that once you take it, you should immediately get in bed, turn the lights off, and close your eyes.

I can’t stress this enough. If you don’t do that, parts of your brain turn off, but your body keeps functioning. Literally, the lights are on but no one’s home.

I swallowed the pill, and thinking I should chillax until it made me sleepy, went downstairs and started watching TV. Oprah was on the DVR. Hey, I like Oprah. Oh, sweet! James Frey is on!

Then I woke up in a sand trap on a golf course in my pajamas.

There was a message on my phone from my dude that said “I’m forwarding you the voice mail you left me last night. Please review and explain”.

Baaby. I dun wan Operah to lose her Oprahness. But whaa is she doin to my James Frey? She was soo. Wrong. He was hurtin. She was hurtin. So much pain. Pain pain pain pain. T Pain. He’s a rapper. It’s a raaaap. So yeah, what a show. What. A. Show. Shit show. Pile of Snow. Anywayyyyyyyyyy, wish you were here. You know how you get all sexy and I pretend like I dun likeit? Well I do. And if you were here. Maaan. OK baaby gonna go play some golf now luuuuuuuuuv you.

The second time I took Ambien, I decided to stay in my room and finish up a few emails before I hit the hay.

The next morning my boss looked at me funny and said, “Um, so that was a really nice email you sent, thanks.”

I ran to my sent folder and found this:

Hey you! Whassup! I just want you to know that I am really proud of you. You are doing a good job. You don’t ever complain. You really set a great example. I like you. Keep spreadin all your sunshine around! Love, Karyn

I SENT THAT TO MY BOSS.

The third time I took Ambien, apparently because idiots do things in threes, I was flying in a private plane to Europe. Sometimes I roll fancy like that.

There was a lot of work to be done when I landed, so I wanted to get a solid ten hours of sleep on the flight. I thought that’s what I did. Then I downloaded my travel pictures, and found thirty shots of myself from very odd angles in the plane’s bathroom that I have absolutely no memory of taking.

Note the sleep mask resting on the top of my head that failed to keep me blacked out. And while my eyes are vacant and trance-like, my odd open-mouthed  expression of surprise freaks me out the most. Guess I was super excited that Ambien just can’t keep me down. TC mark

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