Wednesday, May 28, 2008


I have a rich and varied dream life these thanks to my frequent nightly awakenings. Bill and I have a running joke that I could have never been successful in advertising; I am far too honest and blunt. Last night I had a dream that confirmed Bill’s assessment in the funniest way possible.

Ever since I started the tube feedings I have had trouble with bloating. This is a new thing for me because I have never been much of a meat eater and beans are not, for me, a magical fruit. It took me almost a month to discover that taking simethicone about an hour before bed took the edge off and allowed me to sleep more comfortably. My only previous experience with simethicone was the day after we brought Amelia home from the hospital. She was screaming her head off, and I sent Bill to the 24-hour pharmacy for simethicone drops. When he returned home he told me the cashier had finished off the transaction with the usual, “Have a good night.” Bill responded, “It’s midnight and I’m buying infant gas medicine; I am NOT having a good night.”

In my dream last night I was watching television when a commercial for adult simethicone cam across the screen. In it a series of people were farting and laughing until the screen was full of hysterical flatulent people. I must have woken soon thereafter because the dream was so fresh in my mind. It was like an advertisement for happy pills gone awry. I had this mental image of some well-dressed Madison Avenue types pitching the commercial to a group of stunned and appalled pharmaceutical executives. And I sat there in my bed and giggled my head off. What a great way to start the day!

I realize now how much our mind is in tune with our bodies. I always have to pee in my dreams right before I wake up and have to race to the bathroom. Maybe it‘s the power of suggestion or maybe my brain just keeps me from peeing the bed! Now if I could just get my inner physician to figure out a few other things I’d be all set.

The funny thing about my dreams lately is that they are rarely sad or frightening. If anything they are pleasant and filled with people I have met throughout my life, both lead characters and bit players. I dream often about people that I have not seen in 25 years. I mentioned this to a therapist and said I wondered if it was a way of saying “Good-bye.” She suggested, instead, that it was a way of marshalling support from everyone, everywhere who had meant something to me how ever long ago.

I’m sleeping a little better now thanks to Xanax. I still wake up after 4 hours, but I am able to fall back to sleep for usually another 3 or 4. Hopefully I will eventually get 7 hours straight someday. I am always so grateful for the end of the day and for rest when it comes. I crave my cozy flannel sheets and cotton blanket pulled up to my chin. I like the feeling I get just before I drift off, “Ah, here it is, sleep. Welcome.”

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