UPDATE: After my wife woke up, I told her about what I had written. Her memory is better than mine. My comments at the end reflect the original version; the revised and corrected information in the body of the post reflects her correction.
Had my mind not intervened when it did, you might have been reading this post and wondering what might be causing my recurring amnesia. Fortunately, I realized the word I was planning to use didn’t sound quite right; I intended to complain about my recurring insomnia. So, instead, you may wonder why I have been dealing with sleeplessness, as do I. I trust there really is no relationship between the two troublesome conditions.
I’ve never had amnesia, at least not that I recall, but I’ve had the occasional bout of insomnia. The frequency of finding myself in a state of sleeplessness in the wee hours of the morning has been growing of late, which is a tad annoying. Though it has not had nasty after-effects that I’ve noticed, I’m a bit concerned they will begin to manifest themselves if my too-often-awake-in-the-middle-of-the-night situation goes on for long. Before that were to happen, I would take steps to address the issue, of course, though I don’t know just what those steps would be. That’s what Google and Bing are for, to facilitate medical self-diagnosis and treatment.
My assumption is that my recent experience of severe and recurring nosebleeds are unrelated to my insomnia. I actually broke down and visited a doctor about the nosebleeds, inasmuch as they were so utterly out of character for me; I had awful ideas that the underlying cause of the nosebleeds was my brain being ripped to shreds by out-of-control sinus infections. My doctor reassured me that he found nothing wrong, other than a moderate sinus inflammation. He prescribed a short term regimen of Sudafed PE and Xyrtec. I bought much cheaper substitutes with the same active ingredients.
My assumption, too, is that my insomnia has nothing whatsoever to do with any sense of hopelessness and despair. It couldn’t be caused by the fact that humankind has not found, nor will it ever find, a reasonable way to live in harmony on, or off, this planet. No, that couldn’t be it. And it is almost certainly unrelated to a chilling realization that all life comes to an end and leaves no trace of meaning and value in its wake.
This morning’s incident of malapropism brought to mind a similar incident for which the wrong word was used several years ago. Fortunately, I was not the offending malaproportionist at the time. Two colleagues and I were sitting in the Albuquerque, New Mexico airport, waiting for a flight back to Dallas. One of the two of them kept apologizing for his yawning, saying he was about to fall asleep. Finally, he said something to the effect that “I have a really bad case of necrophilia.” My other colleague and I immediately burst into uncontrollable fits of laughter. The offending malaproportionist (that’s my own personal neologism, thank you) was utterly confused. He was, that is, until I was able to explain, between fits of convulsive laughter, that he had just told us he had a bad case of being erotically attracted to corpses the night before. He had intended to say he had a bad case of narcolepsy. I’ve never seen anyone so instantly turn so beet red.
It has now been about four hours since I first awoke, though I remained in bed for another hour or more. And I actually did get back to sleep for a bit, long enough to have a bizarre dream.
I dreamed my wife and I were trying to follow my nephew and his wife, who were driving our car to the airport, out of a parking garage near downtown Dallas. My wife had rented a tiny car that we intended to return when we got to the airport and drive our car home. When I say tiny, I mean tiny. It was small enough that I was able to sling it over my shoulder as we walked up and down the stairs from one level of the parking garage to the next, looking for an exit. I was upset with the size of the car. It had barely enough space for both my feet. The brake pedal and accelerator kept folding and unfolding as I had tried to use them to drive to find the exit, which is why we used the stairs. Apparently, my nephew drove away; I assumed he was on the way to the airport.
My wife and I called out to people walking out of the garage on the level below us, asking for directions, but they ignored us. Just as we found what appeared to be an exit toward the freeway, we ran into a large group of people, who appeared to be emergency personnel, wearing bright yellow and orange suits. I asked if we were headed in the right direction. One man responded that he did not have time, as they had an emergency to deal with. Behind him was one of their own, sitting on what appeared to be a throne that was being carried by more men dressed in orange and yellow. We made our way past them and I saw that there were train tracks ahead of us. A light rail train was arriving at the outdoor station in front of us, but there were chain link fences between us and the station…and the exit to the freeway was beyond the station. And then I think I woke up, though something tells me there was more to the situation than I remember. I have no idea whether we got to the airport, nor why my wife had rented a fold-up toy car, nor why my nephew was driving our car.
I wonder whether my inability to remember more of the dream is a sign of amnesia or just another symptom of insomnia gone astray?
NOTE: Here is the original version of the paragraph I’ve marked in italics above. The paragraph above is correct…the one that follows is not. My wife corrected my memory after she woke up and heard me tell the story again:
This morning’s incident of malapropism brought to mind a similar incident for which the wrong word was used in place of insomnia several years ago. Fortunately, I was not the offending malaproportionist at the time. Two colleagues and I were sitting in the Albuquerque, New Mexico airport, waiting for a flight back to Dallas. One of the two of them kept apologizing for his yawning. Finally, he said something to the effect that “I had a really bad case of necrophilia last night.” My other colleague and I immediately burst into uncontrollable fits of laughter. The offending malaproportionist (that’s my own personal neologism, thank you) was utterly confused. He was, that is, until I was able to explain, between fits of convulsive laughter, that he had just told us he had a bad case of being erotically attracted to corpses the night before. I’ve never seen anyone so instantly turn so beet red.