Things aren’t good. I thought I felt it on Saturday, just that edge that I was slipping into somewhere I didn’t want to go. I spent the morning with the fire on, I was so cold, it didn’t matter which room it was, I was cold. But on Saturday, that passed yesterday it didn’t. It was on both thought that same cold, the one that has eaten inside you, but can flip in a second to you feeling the sweat building and needing to escape it. On neither day could I put my finger on anything, I just didn’t feel right on Saturday and by Sunday, I truly felt as though my energy and my spark for life had been stolen. Somehow there was nothing there apart from a desperate desire to sleep and to escape the ever increasing pain. I have a nap every day nearly always setting the alarm for two hours but sleeping only one. On both days, the alarm woke me and I came out of a sleep that I didn’t really want to leave. When I got up yesterday, the number of things that felt wrong were growing. Pain levels were rising and the desire to not do anything was so strong that I didn’t even manage to sit at my PC until my normal 6:30, by 5 pm I was desperate to escape it. I changed the TV program, closed everything down here and moved to the settee and started almost straight away to yawn. Nothing felt right. nothing felt normal and I still couldn’t put my finger on anything.
It had just gone 6:30 when I started to feel my mind slipping. I have been there several times before and it’s a really hard place to explain. It’s almost as though I am fighting to stay in the here and now as my mind is telling me I don’t really belong here, I belong anywhere else in time it chooses but not here. Not being mad, I know this is wrong and I know it is some kind of hallucination, one that when I am awake I can fight, but at times in the past it has scared the hell out of me. I have tried desperately to understand it and it wasn’t until I had my COPD exacerbation that I worked it out. When I was at my worst I know without a doubt that the levels of oxygen getting to my brain was too low. I frequently found that I was making no sense, to the point if you go back to the posts I wrote at the time, that I defy anyone in making sense of all of them, as I can’t even do that. I also found myself living in a half world of being everywhere else other than here and each was as real as the next. Last night I was on the edge of one, looking in, feeling the pull and pushing it away but talking, changing position or anything that meant I was in control. My breathing wasn’t great. My diaphragm and three sets of intercostal ribs were in spasm and weren’t letting go. The intercostals were so tight that my normal position of hunching forward where it is easier to breath was more than painful. There was no relief, no comfortable position and I had taken my permitted Morphine booster with little relief, if any. You would have to have been blind not to see the pain I was in and knew that Adam wasn’t just concerned but felt useless. He offered over and over again to do whatever I wanted him to, to help, but there was nothing he could do, no even anything I could do. At one point, I was so cold, so terribly cold, that I had to ask him to put the fire on for a while. It’s Summer here, but it felt like the middle of winter.
Bedtime should have been the end of it, I should have vanished into sleep and woken this morning, but I woke at midnight. I was sweating and terrified, I couldn’t work out what was scaring me so much, but whatever it was, I had escaped it. As I moved the covers off me so that I could get up, I instantly felt my skin turn to fire as the cold air touched it, just as it did when I took my dressing gown off before I went to bed. It’s a sensation that I know all too well. Not only is it on fire, but it feels almost like someone is slicing it off me in strips using a blade made of ice. I quickly dressed and headed to the kitchen, after taking a small detour to the loo. I was desperate for a cigarette. I haven’t felt such a demanding need for nicotine for a while, it’s something miles above just wanting a cigarette, it’s the kind of craving where you feel you could kill anyone who tries to get in your way. Not that I would, but you know what I mean. By the time I was sitting drawing in my much-needed calmer, I knew exactly what I had seen or imagined and had scared me so much. I saw it again as I put on my dressing gown but dismissed it. Sitting quietly in the kitchen I had no doubt that I had just failed to save the life of someone who had slipped from my hands into the middle of a frozen sea. Every time I closed my eyes they were vividly alive and there just in front of me, screaming for my help, then gone under the waves. It was all still there in front of me when I checked the alarm and saw that it was 3 am. My whole night was destroyed by it, right through to 8 am when I woke reaching out into the room trying once more to pull them somehow back on board but failing. I got up.
I know that all of it could be just one of those things, or it could be a the peak in my Morphine causing vivid dreams, but dreams aren’t there when your eyes are wide open, as they were when I woke and I could still see them as I did over and over last night. I could smell the ocean, the diesel and a sweet acetone smell that seemed stuck in the back of my throat. Nor was I dreaming when I got out of bed, with the fear and sensation that I was stepping off the edge of the ship, whilst telling myself that reality was when I touched the floor, just as I did. Dream or hallucination, I don’t think I am qualified to say, but either way, I hate them. When something feels and looks that real, it’s the last place you want to be. It may have nothing to do with the way I feel, or my spikes in temperature, but they feel connected as they appeared together, along with feeling generally unwell. Something is wrong, again. If I had never been here before, I would like the first two times it happened be completely terrified for my sanity. I’m not, well at least not yet. There is a clear connection between these real waking dreams to not feeling well. Not once have they appeared without it. They also always are linked to raised levels of pain in my chest, be it front or back, just my intercostal and diaphragm, or floods of water that I choke on, or congested so badly I wheeze. I am not cold right now, but I don’t feel well, but on the good side, I am quite firmly in the here and now.
Every time this has happened I have been left with one thing I just can’t answer. Do I tell my doctor or not? No one wants to appear stupid or to want to be diagnosed with some sort of mental health issue. How do you say to your doctor, “I’m calling because I have once more been living in World War Two or I just spent the day in a Medieval castle?” Maybe it’s not so much my saying it as what he might say in response, that I fear, or maybe I fear them both. Logic tells me that this and COPD could be connected. I don’t have the proof, but it makes sense that lack of oxygen could easily be the source of what I saw and felt. Why can’t my brain choose something more relaxing, like lying in the sun by a stream on a summers day? Rather than being abused by a barrage of chefs in hot sweaty castle kitchen or worse still being hunted by U-boats at night. It was just one more night and part of a day, spent fighting between reality and what, I just don’t know.
My lungs are already locking up and I still don’t feel right, but at last in the past two hours my mind has been mine. Every minute of distance between there and now, makes me question if I should even have written this. Is it real enough to be noted, or should I just have put it down as an aberration. When I started writing this blog, I made a decision that no matter what it was that happened it had to written. No matter how disgusting or painful, the words had to be here in case someone out there is searching to see if they are not alone. Well, I have always stuck to it, what you make of it is up to you.
Please read my post from 2 years ago – 03/08/2013 – Assessing the milestone
TARA!!!! I have made! At last the magical sum of £60 which means at last Google will be paying my earnings from the Ad on my blogs into my bank account! This is the final proof that Advertising doesn’t pay
DON’T STOP WRITING BECAUSE YOU FEAR THE RESULTS.NOT ONLY ARE YOU NOT GETTING ENOUGH OXYGEN; BUT YOUR BRAIN IS NOT GETTING ENOUGH BLOOD FLOW TO CARRY THAT OXYGEN.THE LESS ACTIVE,THE LESS BLOOD FLOWS TO WHERE IT’S NEEDED.DON’T BE AFRAID OF DEVELOPING A MENTAL ILLNESS. I HAVE DEVELOPED 3 .5 YEARS, IS HOW LONG IT TOOK THEM TO FIGURE OUT THAT THE STRESS,MEDS AND FEAR WERE CAUSING ME TO WAKE UP IN A WORLD I DIDN’T RECOGNIZE AND THEN HAVING TO DEAL EVERY MORNING WITH THE REALITY OF WHAT IS NOW MY LIFE.I DON’T KNOW IF I’M MAKING ANY SENSE,BUT I’VE CAUGHT MYSELF TALKING TO OR CRYING FOR SOMEONE THAT WASN’T THERE. NO !! I’M NOT CRAZY.I AM HOWEVER OVER-STRESSED (DOING NOTHING),AND SAD (DEPRESSED?) AND MY MEDS NEED TO BE ADJUSTED AS THEY CAUSE WILD VIVID DREAMS. I HOPE THIS HELPS.