Friday, March 29, 2013

Saturday Night Soup for the Soul (44)

here is this round of dreams tracking my shattered personality (pretty sure it was shattered by trauma in childhood) that I have had – for YEARS now – a series of dreams where I live in multiple places – each sort of a compartment that exists in a fixed point in my life that I can jump between crossing time and space.   This decade’s long dream series that seem so real when I am having the dream.

The first dream was a real feel good one in that I was at some professional conference with people I work with.  All the people I have ever worked with were unified and together.  It seemed so nice that some event had finally brought all of them together and I was very happy at this.

 I remember that at one point a collection of Brits from Walker (software company in San Francisco that I worked for from 1984 to 1999) were getting Jolly on Brew and began singing rounds of Donavon songs.  One particular person, Neil Robertson, was especially full spirited.  He had a sort of “pudding basin” haircut in the dream.  His hair was strawberry blond.  He looked a bit daft in the haircut (a bit of Dumb and Dumber) even though in real life he is super smart.   My eyes caught his as he sang in joviality.

It was nice to finally have the people – all the people – that I have ever worked with together.

So last night (the second dream) saw me returning once again to a former home that in the dream, as always, I somehow still live in concurrently to all the other homes I still live in. 

I was walking in late summer dry heat in a semi residential area along a road in a mythical place called “Guadalupe Del Sol Canyon” which was close to the Sunset District of San Francisco.  I was with someone named Marilyn - my oldest friend from age twelve and who I touched bases with in the past three months only to learn she is mentally ill.  We came to what I believed to be my house in San Francisco – address 1226 which is my current house number and was not my San Francisco house number.

I opened a garage door that gave me access to an interior courtyard (in the dream, did not exist in real life).  Everything seemed repainted in bright enamel hues and changed.  Then I realized it was not my home after all – and that I still had a ways to go. 

This house was now an inn with a restaurant and outdoor patio. People were seated drinking, eating lite lunches in the dry heat, overlooking a valley filled with shimmering golden grass.  Looked a bit like the Napa Valley.  Or Los Gatos where Marilyn once had a connection (her dad still lives there and I drove thru it last summer).  I went to the gate having to push through people who were trying to come into the establishment to do business.

I walked across the valley and Marilyn could not keep up with me despite my trying to keep her with me and on track crossing the valley.  I wanted to guide her to safety.  However, I lost her. 

I looked across the wide valley and saw others, but she was not among them.  Oh well…  Then I saw a man holding a dog that looked more like a large fox.  The dog had been bit by something.  I surmised that Rattlesnakes could be in the hot dry grass.  The man reached me.  His dog (no longer looking like a fox) was okay and had not been bit. He put the dog down to continue the same direction I was going to my San Francisco home.

Gesturing to the vast valley before us (and the houses I had started the dream with on the far side) I told him “This valley was once a prehistoric lake bed

Bad news

On a Tuesday night (Jan 22, 2013) I had a terrible pain in my left temple as I tried to go to sleep.  I have been battling this terrible cold that has spread up here that goes into your lungs (had that all last week – thought I would crack my ribs coughing) then up into you sinus area.  All day long I had had flashing pains throughout my teeth and jaw.  Have had that before and even TWICE gone to the dentist only to have nothing found in regards to my teeth.

So I thought that was it (sinusitis).   Yet something very odd was happening that I have never experienced before.  The area on the side of my face was both hot and cold at once.

In the middle of the night I got up to pee.  I suddenly realized I had no balance and my legs were not responding correctly – notably the right one.  That woke me up big time fearing I could fall.  When I got up in the morning it seemed even worse.  Put in the morning eye drops which always feel cold (hold over from Lasik eye surgery is dry eyes).  The right eye was normal (felt cold).  But the left eye drops felt like hot water.  Was bizarre.  Sort of scary.

Walking down stairs was weird.  It was as if my right leg was now six inches longer than it used to be and was therefore reaching the stair before it SHOULD have been reaching the stair.  I know that sounds crazy but that is as accurate a description as I can write.   I knew something was definitely wrong and not in a good way.

Went to work wondering what I should do.   Mind was normal working on Excel VBA code and SQL.  At a late lunch I called a consulting nurse and said “I think I may either have a sinus infection or have had a mini stroke last night”.  After I told her what I wrote above and after 5 minutes of answering her questions she advised me to go to ER via ambulance immediately. She did not want me driving.  I DEFINITLY did not want to be in an ambulance so called my boss to see if she would take me (she was in a meeting) so called roommate.  He came and took me.

Arrived during a total hospital lock down due to armed threat (husband or boyfriend of a nurse with a gun).  Got in.  Had EKG, blood, urine, mental and physical tests and Cat Scan.  All had normal results.  Blood pressure got down to 124/72 which is amazing considering I weigh 280. 

My roommate kept complaining at what an imposition it was on his life to have to take me there and wait.  I told him to go home (I wish I had driven myself) and made a mental note about this for future reference.

So they did a MRI scan which is a strange process.  Seven scans lasting from 2 to 7 minutes apiece where you have to be 100% motionless.  I sneezed during # 6 (2 minute one) and had to redo it.  Then comes an IV of some stuff that allows them to see leaks or blockages followed by  two more scans of 3.5 and 2 minutes respectively.

Then came more waiting.  Heard an African America elderly mother or grand mother and her adult daughter/granddaughter in the waiting cube across from me.  The daughter had done something that related to her now being in ER.  She was told by someone on the ER Staff that she needed a counselor follow up.  Grandma agreed.  She had a test for cervix cancer (routine?). 

I overheard the mother/grandma told her that “some family member had been talking to Satin”.  One of them kept flatulating very loudly, way wet and messy sounding.

After that I rapidly started to get dressed as I wanted now to leave and be home.  Those people left, and a mother and a screaming baby came in.  She and someone else had each given the baby Tylenol and thought the baby may OD or die.   She was 16 (I overheard her birth date and the baby’s birthdate from late last year) and was 15 when the baby was born.   Hispanic.   The dose turns out was totally okay for the baby.  Thank god she came and it was okay.

Finally my Doctor came in with MRI results.  No infection but a narrowing of an artery in my left temple area.  This one feeds brain area that controls body sensation of heat and cold (hence the HOT and COLD sensation at the same time and the HOT sensation of eye drops).  My cholesterol is good so this mini stroke event could be congenital (my dad had this) or a combination of factors.

Next step I go to see a neurologist to see what he wants to advise me to do next.  Earliest available appointment is in April… In the mean time I have cut out anything bad from my diet, take an aspirin a day and stay active walking (they said that I have the worst job I could have – sitting and experiencing stress).

Something I have not mentioned: Something has seemed off, not right, up in my head for about three years.  Hard to describe but I think I have felt something of this condition now for three years.  Stay tuned.  

And if I die - goodbye and good luck to you all. 
And now let us break bread and share Saturday Night Soup.

1. Chanting Buddha's Holy Name is what it says it is.  Thank you Robert Ho for once sending this to me.  I treasure your memory and miss you.

All of this makes it's way into this week's soup. You can get your bowl of Saturday Night Soup by clicking the jukebox.

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