Friday, May 20, 2016

Dreaming In Darkness.

Dreaming In Darkness.

Here is a basic question for you and don’t worry it is an easy one. Where do we dream? The answer, fundamentally, is that we dream in darkness.

Think about that for a moment. When you close your eyes, the world effectively goes black to you. On a base level, our minds are cut off from one of our primary senses and we surrender it over to its own devices as we began to shut down our body’s systems to allow everything to rest/recuperate.

And on some level, it is in that ethereal plane of void and shadow that some of our most vivid and bright moments are born. We call them dreams, but in truth they can be anything from unconscious fragments of thought, memories to unresolved fears and worries. My point is that is where some powerful parts of ourselves are born.

I know something about this, because if anyone is qualified to talk about such a subject; I am. Over the course of my life I have done so much sleeping. And not in the way you might expect.

As many people familiar with me are aware I suffer from two neurological conditions known as Narcolepsy and Cataplexy. Directly because of this I had to go for years before we had an accurate diagnosis or appropriate treatment. I’ve spent weeks and even months in a perpetual state of sleep.

While in any of these events, I could sometimes hear things around me and at others was lost to dreams. It is said, by both experts and those who suffer the shackles of sleep or plagued by the demons of dream (both are expressions I have used to inject some degree of humor into the discussion of my condition) that those with this problem tend to experience far more vivid and intense dreams.

While others might only dream while in the confines of their beds, we can involuntarily fluctuate in and out of REM sleep just walking around. We have no control over when we choose to drift off to sleep, let alone when we will awaken. Long story short, I can go from wide awake to deep sleep as rapidly as a light switch can be flipped.

I mention all of this as a matter of perspective. Two days ago, my son collapsed in the check out aisle at a local grocery store. Within moments I was packing him out to our vehicle. We had believed he suffered from a form of seizure and had been treating him accordingly. So, after the designated time had passed and his situation remained unchanged, we administered his emergency medication and called an ambulance.

By that evening my son couldn’t stay awake and it was decided to transport him and my Wife 4 hours by ambulance to a children’s hospital. The next day tests were being done and he spent the majority of the day asleep and unresponsive. In time, a neurologist reviewed his data and stated that this was not a seizure that he was suffering from.

All manner of thoughts and questions now flood through my thoughts. But at the core is the fact that, these doctors have admitted that they believe my son might share my affliction. This point leaves me conflicted.

It is terrifying beyond description to be frozen inside your body and unable to react. It is also a nightmare to awaken in a fright unaware of where you are or what is going on, especially if you suffer from paralysis via cataplexy or the like. To know that my child now might be experiencing the same thing pains me. And yet, it is a foe I already know…

In addition to this whole ordeal, our oldest son was airlifted last night as well to the same hospital with my Mother escorting him. There has been some debate regarding the authenticity of his symptoms but regardless they have to take it seriously when a child, even a 16 year old one, complains of numbness, tingling and loss of use of his legs or lower back.


In the meantime, I am confined to my home, trying to care for my two daughters and coordinate things from here as best I can. In many ways I feel as if I am trapped inside some terrible dream and unable to affect any impact on the real world.