Our Hallucination

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November 7th, 2010

Imagine I wrote this post a few weeks back. I was telling my cousin-buddy Chris this story and he asked why it wasn’t up on the blog. We were sitting in the parking lot outside my daughter Skye’s play, waiting for the crowd to all enter the auditorium so I could ghost in and sit […]

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Imagine I wrote this post a few weeks back. I was telling my cousin-buddy Chris this story and he asked why it wasn’t up on the blog. We were sitting in the parking lot outside my daughter Skye’s play, waiting for the crowd to all enter the auditorium so I could ghost in and sit in the back with a CDC mask. I told him to give me a break for not actually writing it: I wasn’t able to get out of bed too long back then.

There were a few nights that I was on heroin or opium and I really can’t remember what happened. That sounds like the beginning to a really great college story. Unfortunately this one involves poo. The actual drug I was imbibing, every 15 minutes via a convenient pump mechanism, was dilaudid — a derivative of morphine. Deluded is a better name for the painkiller.

Not going into too much gross detail about my gross motor skills, let’s just take it as assumed that eating and swallowing were out and pooing was in — way in. There’s one night in particular that I have not been able to get independent verification on but a shadowy part of my memory recalls being hoisted into rubber pants and being told to just sit there while a battalion of midnight shift workers took care of “things.” I know I wasn’t imagining this.

But I probably was.

The doctor told me one of dilaudid’s side effects was hallucinations. I told him, seriously as I could, “I’m not having any problems with that until I close my eyes and the room fills with people I’ve never met.”

One of the greatest benefits about being a jokester is people think you’re kidding when you’re really being serious but shouldn’t be. I wasn’t ready for the drug to go bye-bye. Neither were all my friends who instantly arrived whenever my eyelids blinked. They were a great group of partiers who would hang out everywhere in the place, gravity not being a concern to them. Were they the dead? Were they from another realm? Were they fig newtons of my imagination?

None of them were evil, many didn’t even seem to notice me and only a few would sit or float bedside and carry on a brief conversation. No, I can’t remember what they had to say but there was a whole passel of them just enjoying the jam of being in my head and showing me an alternate reality.

I should’ve done more drugs in college.https://readthespirit.com/rodney-curtis/wp-content/uploads/sites/14/2013/03/wpid-rcOurHallucination.jpg

Having beings and buddies, not-too-real but nevertheless present, was a pleasant surprise. I wasn’t prepared to call them hallucinations but I wasn’t ready to dismiss them entirely. As I tap this out — munching on magnesium-producing brown rice with a nightcap of yogurt to continue curing my insides — I look at the hallucinations as wacky windows into something else. Whether they were real or imagined I’m glad for their existence. They were nonchalant and I felt comfortable around them. That may be the best message ever.

If that’s what other realms are about, I can handle it. If that’s where my mind goes in the end, I can handle that too. It’s these glimpses that I’ve gotten along the way that provide a sense of something eternal.

And then as if scripted, my cousin and I float back into the auditorium and there’s my daughter on stage talking in Our Town about how dead people finally understand there’s something eternal to all of this. Here’s what she, I mean Thornton Wilder said:

“We all know that something is eternal, and it ain’t houses, and it ain’t names, and it ain’t the earth and it ain’t even the stars … everybody knows in their bones that something is eternal, and that something has got a lot to do with human beings. All the greatest minds ever lived have been telling us that for five thousand years, and yet you’d be surprised how often people lose sight of that. There is something eternal about every human being.”

She dedicated this next line to her Mom and I and even added it to the program.

“Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it? The saints and poets, maybe — they do some.”

If my daughter sees Marci and I as a saint and a poet, we’ve already achieved eternity. And that’s not being Deluded one bit.

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