Warning: What you are about to read might sound crazy. It is just my mind...and dementia...playing its tricks on me. Read on...
I fell asleep quite normally a few nights ago. It was hopefully to be my third night in a row that I would sleep all night. No such luck. After about three hours of sleep, I was awakened by my knees which were throbbing in pain. As I awoke, I kept trying to remember what I could do to relieve the pain. Immediately, I began to try to figure out which remote control I could use to get the pain to stop (I told you this wouldn't make sense!). Numbers raced through my head. Then, images of remotes. The TV remote? I went over how to use it in my mind and decided that no, the TV remote would not work. What other remote did I have? One for the radio? Then I remembered I had none for the radio. Oh, yes! The electric blanket remote would work, until I remembered that we were not using the electric blanket...The number bed-that has a remote! I finally reasoned that it wouldn't help either. I was frantic as images continued flashing through my head and my knees continued to hurt to distraction...I could see me washing the dog. WHY WAS THAT SHOWING UP NOW? I lay for a good thirty minutes or more, never moving--but struggling just the same-mentally! And, finally, it came to me. I knew how to stop the pain.
MOVE! It was as easy as that! I just needed to change my position! I turned over, and, sure enough, the pain from my knees subsided, but the ache in my heart remained. At this point, worry swept over me... was my dementia getting worse this quickly??? Is this how life will be? Will I know when I am disoriented? Will I know when I am confused and not be able to do anything to help it? Will I know when I don't know, but should?
As the minutes continued to pass, the my thoughts of what might be to come subsided some, but by now, sleep eluded me. I had to get up to write down this episode before I forgot it, I decided. Tomorrow morning would be too late. And, so it was, that at 1:30 in the morning, I began to write about what happened and the condition of my thoughts at the time.
I used pen and paper that early morn to record the events. Writing about it has helped. Putting my fears on paper gave them form, making them more concrete in nature. The idea of using my irrational thoughts and subsequent fears to help others brought me comfort.
I am sure that those normal people out there who are reading this are wondering why I would think I could alleviate my knee pain with a remote control. Who knows why?
Later that same morning, I told my husband about this "remote thing" while he prepared to go to work. God bless him and his humor.
"Oh, Leah. I forgot to tell you," he called from out of the bathroom. "That remote you're looking for is out in the shed. It needs batteries."
That made me laugh...and the demons of doubt and fear about the future were pushed aside...at least until next time.