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Saturday, March 31, 2007

Psycho Maria

After surgery my surgeon prescribed some pain meds. I still take them occasionally but only if I really hurt and then only if Greg forces me. If he notices me grimacing more than usual he'll bring me this big horse pill and water. “Take it,” he orders.

“I can make it,” I groan back. -sigh- He never believes me.

It’s not that I’m that stoic. I just don’t like depending on anything. But this is where one of those funny stories I told you about comes in.

Right after surgery, they had me hooked up to an IV and the nurse attached this pump to my hospital gown. I vaguely remember her explaining to me that I was to press this button if I were in pain. Normally, I always ask what it is they’re giving me but I was just too out of it to care at the time.

Anyway, for the first 48 hours I was in horrible pain; the kind of pain that hurts just laying there. So I hit that button to take the edge off. It would help for about 40 minutes then I’d go back to grinding my teeth. (I kept time constantly. There was a big clock on the wall in front of me.)

After the first 24 hours, which by the way seemed to last forever, I started hearing voices in my room even though I was alone. Then came pulsing shadows that zoomed from the doorway to my bedside. Other times, I’d get brief glimpses of grotesque half human/half beast combinations standing over my bed or fat flying fairies shooting past a nurse's shoulder.

I don’t know if it was because I was too beat up to care or if I knew that my subconscious was creating these creatures, but I was never frightened. …all right, the horse-head nurse licking her chops was kind of creepy but the rest of them were acceptable monsters.

I knew they were hallucinations because they were in full color and I dream in grays. Besides, I couldn’t sleep for more than 20 minutes at a time on the first day. They also had me strapped into this blood pressure suit that wrapped around my lower extremities and kept me stabilized. It was noisy and constrictive, making it pretty uncomfortable and impossible to sleep for long.

But the weirdest part happened on the third day. Twice a nurse came into my room and I answered her question before she spoke it. I think it freaked her out the second time. She asked me if I was psychic. I will swear to you I heard her ask those questions plain as day. I would have passed it off as part of my hallucinations, but they had taken me off the morphine by then.

My sister told me later that she had a similar experience when they put her on morphine, although she didn’t have the precognition.

It was an interesting experience. Not interesting enough to repeat it, but it certainly gave me some good story fodder. Too bad someone didn’t ask me what the next day’s lottery numbers were going to be. We could’ve been rich!