Thursday, May 28, 2015

Not In My Right Mind

It's not like I haven't hallucinated before.

When I was about 12, I woke up, screaming, clutching my bedsheets, and pushing myself into the corner of my bed, away from the furniture that I was sure was moving toward me, wanting to do me harm. The walls were closing in on me, and I was surely going to be crushed.

When my parents came to my rescue, my mother deemed that I was burning up. I was sweating and shivering, and my father prepared a cold bath in which to immerse me, to try and bring my core temperature down.

When you have a fever, your mind can play tricks on you.

I'm also known to talk in my sleep. Usually, I mutter, my words illegible, often coming out as grunts or off-key singing. I never remember saying anything, or I may wake myself as I have a conversation with a non-existent audience. My wife once told be that I lifted my head, rolled over to face her, and in a clear, perfectly enunciated voice, said, "You'd better get your snowmobile." I then rolled back into position, and continued my deep sleep.

I have even spoken in other languages, as though I was speaking in Russian, or some Eastern European tongue. Before I knew what it meant, I had once uttered, "Was sind die kleinen Hosen?"

I know, it makes no sense, but I was sleeping. And at that time, I didn't speak any German.

So, it was no surprise to me, the other evening, as my body baked with a hallucinatory fever, that I would mutter, I would speak. And, to my wife, I would say, "I love you very, very much."

And then I would add someone else's name.

I heard screaming, I heard aggression.

Did I really say what I thought I said? Was I coherent? Were my words understood?

Was my wife even in the room as I said what I thought I said?

"Was I speaking or just muttering?" I asked her as my fever seemed to break, as I awoke, and as she fed me fluids.

"Yeah, you muttered."

"Was there yelling? Did you yell at me?"

"No, that must have been the girls. They were fighting."

I couldn't ask her what I thought I said to her. What if I hadn't? I'm pretty sure, as time has passed, that what I might have said, if I said it at all, was to an empty room. That it was muttered.

I'm going to pretend I didn't say it at all.

After all, I wasn't in my right mind.

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