Monday, February 9, 2015

Report from Pillville: Ghosts, the Grim Reaper, and Other Thrills

my mother and her twin Millie

If you're a regular visitor here, you've probably heard that my mother frequently yells in her sleep. Or maybe you've just plain heard her. She's loud.

One morning just past dawn I heard her proclaim, "I really don't know all that much about baseball," and then proceed to sing "Take Me Out To the Ballgame." Mostly though she yells things like: WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE? WHO ARE YOU? AAAARRRGG. NOOOOO!  GET OUT OF HERE RIGHT NOW! I'm usually awakened from a sound sleep sometime between 3 and 4 a.m., heart pounding, adrenaline rocketing through my body. Fight or flight, the horrified brain and body ask each other. Don't know. Pantpantpantpant. Don't know. 

Last night it was 4:45 a.m when she screamed all of the above. I leap out of bed and run to my door to lock it, considering that there might be an intruder downstairs. I dash back to my nightstand, grab my phone, go to the keypad and dial 9 to get a head start on 911. I listen. More screaming. Do I grab the martial arts stick of Dan's and go downstairs? Hahahaha. (Anyone who's seen me actually panic is laughing right now.) But, hey, I do grab the stick--I just continue to cower behind my locked door, a third of the way to an emergency phone call.

Holy shit, right?

Well, I determined that it was just my mom yelling, and I got back to sleep and then had a ridiculously stressful dream wherein I drove to Phoenix to help my friend P with her mother, knowing full well I had less than 24 hours to do so while M was here with my mom. I got lost. But finally found P's apartment which was massive and shaped like a Mayan temple with narrow curving driveways to each of the levels. It was so confusing I parked my car down below and then realized there was no way I could walk to the top. Plus, I had my cat from decades ago, Little Guy, with me, and he was squirming in my arms and I was afraid he'd run away, and then trying to get back to my car, I forgot where I parked it and then, in a panic, called M who was completely unsympathetic, but I found the car, and drove it up the terrifying driveway and found my friend P. Maybe I helped her, I don't remember, but when I went to leave I accidentally let her chihuahua, Max, escape, and he went running down the street with a pack of dogs who were chasing a car. But when a car came toward me, they turned around to chase that car, and I somehow grabbed him before P noticed and put him back on her patio, but I got lost again, this time in the network of courtyards and nearly bumped into an old tattooed woman who called me stupid. When I finally got to my car, driving down was more terrifying than going up, and I kept thinking that I must be on a pedestrian path instead of a street, so I kept turning onto an intersecting route every time I had a chance, but the roads kept getting smaller and smaller until eventually my car was squeezed and tipped onto its side, wherein a grumpy old guy with a narrow trailer just wide enough to hold a Prius on its side, said he'd take my car down the hill for me. But when I turned my back, he'd pulled it into his garage and covered it up with an old carpet and said he didn't know anything about my car. I realized he was a thief and then I woke up, horrified that I'd lost track of my cat.

Today I asked my mom what she'd been dreaming about, thinking maybe she'd seen a ghost or the grim reaper. "Oh, Millie and I were lost in the woods again," she said. "I thought we'd never find our way home."


Ms. Moon said...

Being lost is a common thread in my dreams. Usually, for me, I'm in a city with which I am completely unfamiliar. So far, though, I have never had to drive down skinny roads or up driveways to Mayan pyramids. I'm expecting that tonight now.
I don't know how you keep going on the amount of good sleep you get. Or actually, don't get.

Elizabeth said...

Oh, that photo. It's one part charming and the rest The Shining. The rest of the post, including the screaming, your lack of sleep and your dream are definitely all The Shining.

Dear, dear Denise. May you get some rest.

jeannine nye said...

Hi again, just read your recent post...what nightmares your mum has been having and how hard to get a good nights sleep for you..I do hope that things get better and that your grief is starting to get a bit softer,..when its all raw and awful its terrible to go through the days... I know that you are such a strong girl, but sometimes you have to have time for you. [We looked after our parents and only afterwards knew how hard it had been, because at the time, we were just doing and coping with each day...] I send you hugs and good wishes from the little old country across the pond**