Miercoles con los Amigos Invisibles vol. 10

Last night, I had a dream from which I remembered only one scene. This lasted about twenty subjective seconds.

I and my allies (not pictured) were standing in front of the entrance to our place.
Our place felt like a combination of two types of location. Firstly, a mine, but one where the shaft extends horizontally into the rock of a hillside rather than vertically down underground. Secondly, a high-tech scientific facility of the sort where special security protocols control entry and exit.
A stranger came up to us. His intent was hostile, and he wore a full-face gas mask, of the sort that has goggles to cover the eyes and two air filters jutting out to either side of the mouth, all mounted on a rubber mask. He was wearing something like a battered, grayish-black jumpsuit. I was aware that he was about to release a toxin into the air, and turned towards the entrance as if to go inside. The others present remained where they were standing. Instead of going inside, I turned back to inspect the stranger and his gas mask. There was a small LCD screen mounted on the front of the mask, which I had previously not noticed. I studied the screen more closely. Words scrolled across it, and I read them. Just as I began to comprehend what I had read, a puff of soot or smoke exploded into the air around me. This was the toxic attack I had known the stranger brought. I knew I was breathing the cloud in, had been exposed to it because I had not gone inside. I found myself unable to breathe and woke up in a sudden panic.

I returned to this image several times throughout the day, but didn't feel especially like writing it down. Now I do.

Yesterday I did indeed take off work to go see a doctor about my throat. As I mentioned in today's earlier post, it was the doctor's opinion that I have acute pharyngitis. He prescribed penicillin, which I was able to pick up at the pharmacy after work today.

In the interests of honesty, I did smoke a total of five unfiltered cigarettes today, in addition to what I smoked when I got home from the pharmacy. This doubtless aggravated my throat and lung situation. In the past couple of weeks that I've been feeling bad, such behavior has been known to irritate my lung tissues to the point where breathing becomes painful and requires greater than normal effort for a time.

However, when I took my first penicillin this evening, it got stuck in my esophagus about halfway down. My neck and upper chest began to tighten up and developed a burning sensation. I became dizzy. My left trapezius is normally tight and somewhat sore, but that and my neck just above the collarbone feel as though someone has grabbed them. Someone who occasionally squeezes.

The first thing I did, of course, was panic. I suppose I haven't got much of a handle on panic after all. I attempted to extricate the pill from my stomach. Due to both the large quantities of liquids I had consumed in order to swallow it and my unfamiliarity with the procedure, this attempt was not successful. Dave and I briefly discussed a return to the emergency room. I then had the bright idea to call mom and ask her if I am, in fact, allergic to penicillin. As a child, she informed me, I had not been so. Which was a very great relief to me. When I went on to describe my symptoms in more detail, she allowed there was a possibility I'd developed a sensitivity to penicillin in recent years. If so, a Benadryl or Claritin might help. Her recommendation was that I call one of my aunts, both of whom are nurses, if I still got worse after that. Dave also pointed out, once I was off the phone, that penicillin tends to forcefully drive bacteria out of infected tisues, and this movement may account for some others of my symptoms.

It's been almost an hour since I took that damn Claritin. I've been typing this post almost the entire time. My symptoms are nearly unchanged, though a back rub from Dave and the relaxation of some back, shoulder and neck muscles provided temporary relief. And irony of ironies, I want a cigarette ever so much.

In all my reviews of the remembered dream scene, I could never recall the words I read on the LCD screen or even the sense of them. Ah, if only it had read "don't take the penicillin" and I'd also remembered it. That would have saved me a bad time. But I am sure my unconscious uses the symbol of the act of reading in a different, less direct way. Reading and eating may actually be similar symbols in my lexicon.

[Here I attempt to smoke that cigarette I want so much. When this proves unwise, I go to sit under a hot shower for half an hour. I emerge, clad in Dave's bathrobe, obtain spicy chicken soup, and return here.]

In fact the last time I read anything in a dream, it was a document, delivered in a case which also contained a condom, sealed with an angry red circle. This was the dream where I fought stormtroopers and later sneaked out posing as one of them. (I was a jet trooper, and stayed close to the ceiling. Memories of Battlefront II influenced that image for sure.) Which dream occurred a day or so before that unpleasant Saturday during busy season when I left work early to go to the hospital. Where after many hours and (dismayingly expensive) tests they discovered the small ovarian cyst which, while painful, is not actually a long-term threat to my health.

I backread a bit just now, and that was one of the ones I didn't log. I wonder if there is a correlation between the logging of dreams and the occurrence of the events they represent. Here we have two unlogged dreams in which I had read a threatening document. Shortly after each I was diagnosed with a medical condition to which the dream symbols surrounding the text I read bear a notable relationship. But this speculation goes too far towards an assertion of correlation and the following attempt to determine if a causal relationship exists. Way ahead of myself there.

The boldest hypothesis I am willing to put forth at this time is this. My body and all its systems are connected to my brain. My unconscious mind has greater access to the data contained in these systems than my conscious mind. When there is an urgent problem with my physical systems, my unconscious mind may be able to represent some of this information in the form of a dream. Proper interpretation of such dreams may enable me to seek proper medical care more promptly when it is needed or determine when it may not be needed with greater confidence.

I go now to attempt rest or sleep if such are possible. May all be well, me included.