Thursday’s Wandering Thought
As news about his mother’s declining condition was received, he thought for a while and then, teary-eyed, told her with his mind across time and space, “Well, Mom, I’m good with whatever you decide to do. You’ve known pain and sickness for so many years. If you decide you’re done, I understand.”
She would be missed, though. Strong, intelligent, and vital, she was his favorite mother. Probably always would be.
Salfloofbrious (floofinition) – An animal whose presence is favorable to health or well-being, or promotes harmony and peace.
In use: “Beginning in the weeks before Debra’s breast cancer diagnosis, Karma became very loving and attentive, staying with her side as Debra underwent treatment and the cancer went into remission.”
The Sick Dream
I was at work. Tired. Becoming more tired. Then, sleepy. Eyes were falling shut. Body slumping over. Nothing I could do.
A friendly co-worker, male, was trying to take care of me. Help me. But he was helpless. My work shift ended. He tried helping me leave. I couldn’t. Everything was a strain. He was telling me, “Come on, I’ll get you help.” I was replying, “I’m okay, I just want to sleep.”
Became separated from him. Found myself on a cement sidewalk by an asphalt road. An intersection. Naked. Crawling. Barely awake. Cars passing me. One, a black Chevy Suburban, stopped. The driver asked, “Are you alright? Do you need help?”
I kept going. Found clothes. Blue jeans. Pale tee shirt. Boots. Managed to dress. Get on my feet. Walked, swaying and stumbling. Eyes barely open. Brain coddled in thick pudding. Thoughts almost non-existent. Had garbage in a small white bag. Began looking to dispose of it. Saw a booth. Constructed of plywood. Took it there.
Food booth. The man behind the booth counter asked, “What do you want to order?”
I handed him the bag of garbage. He took it. Tossed it away behind him. “What do you want?”
Mute, I shook my head. Moved on. Thinking, sick. Still sick. But getting better. I was walking. On my feet. Swaying less. People began speaking to me. I began comprehending them. Interacting with them. Answering questions. Two young women joined me. They asked me if I need help. No, I was okay. Then, could I help them? They needed information.
Initially, I balked. Wasn’t my area. Didn’t know anything about it. Then I told them I would help. I would find the answers to their questions and get back to them. Trotted from one place to another, seeking answers. Inadvertently stumbled through someone’s garden while attempting a short cut. They’d just set it up. Planted it. Nothing was growing. Backing out, I fixed the damages. Then ran down to the other end of town. Thinking, anyone seeing me would think he runs everywhere.
I was running everywhere through a busy, hilly city. Felt good. The sickness was gone. I stopped running. Looked around to see where I was. Thought, where do I want to go?
I had multiple dreams last night. Most remain in pieces in my mind like debris after a storm. The essences:
- I was plotting a murder and intent on carrying it out. I don’t know who I was killing or my motive.
- A cat was the size of an American nickel. A happy little animal, he was kept in a jar. I watched over him, ensuring he wasn’t lost or injured, and played with him.
- The third dream found me playing a game that may have been a show on television. I was winning by answering questions and advancing through levels. It seemed to combine physical prowess and the ability to answer questions.
Not much further information is available on the murder dream. Awakening and thinking about it, I attribute it more to my writing muses than an intention to kill another person. I’m always thinking about escaping, surviving, killing, investigating, flying, traveling, exploring, and robbing places. They’re exercises for my imagination, IMO.
The cat dream was a simple anxiety dream. Quinn hasn’t been well. His breathing bothered us. We’d endured a summer of wildfire smoke and hazardous air, so I put his breathing problems down to that. We’d been keeping him inside and addressing his breathing issues. When he didn’t improve after the air improved, I thought I’d take him in for an antibiotic shot.
But the vet found a lump on Quinn’s neck, so we’re going through the challenge of treating him, keeping him hydrated, and feeding him. We’re not certain of his issue, yet. Never a large cat, he dropped two pounds and now weighs just five. He’s mostly perky, though, but not eating and drinking enough on his own. I take comfort and hope in signs like him rubbing up against me, jumping on my lap, stretching, trying to claw furniture, and yawning.
Meanwhile, I’m going through the process of letting him go. I’ve endured this with other pets, so I understand some of the emotional, physical, and intellectual dynamics. It’s always different, of course, and it’s never easy.
I enjoyed the game show dream. First, you’d press a button to start the big wheel spinning, and press the button again to stop it. The big wheel had activities and numbers. If it landed on the activity, you did it. Doing the activity, such as twenty push-ups, authorized you to rob a competitor by taking a token or moving them back by a spin on the punishing wheel.
If the big wheel landed on a number, that was the number of spaces you’d move. Climbing, crawling, jumping, and swinging on ropes were required to move along squares. After moving forward and stopping on a square, you were asked a question. Fall to answer it correctly — it was timed, but you had three chances — meant you faced the punishment wheel.
Come to think of it, there was a television audience cheering us on. Writing about it today prompts comparisons to an updated game of Life combined with Trival Pursuit, which sums up my writing life, I think.
Spinning wheels, killing time, chasing trivia, and hoping to advance, it’s a writer’s life.
Six Days, Seven Nights
I’m feeling so much better today. The cold seemed to have taken a cruise of my body for six days and seven nights. They really seemed to party in my eyes, for that was the worse day and lasted almost two days. The cold briefly ported in my chest at the end, and barely visited my throat in the beginning. Although I didn’t walk and exercise as much as desired, I wrote every day. There was no vomiting, and bowel movements were normal. Severe coughing only struck the last two days. As illnesses go, it was pretty mild and short, and I consider myself fortunate that I feel almost completely well today.
Thanks for indulging me as I complained about it. Time to write like crazy, at least one more time. Cheers
The Caring Cats
It was day zillion of my head cold. That could be an exaggeration but that’s what it seems like. Illness impacts time perception, just like being in school when you’re young and in school impacts time perception. My illness found me in bed at a time that’s not my norm. Apparently, that fact slipped past my cats.
I can’t say I was dozing. Motionless on my back, I was concentrating on the pains and sounds my body made, sometimes writing in my head, and sometimes attending the sounds and movements of the mucus streams in my head. The moment’s key is that I was motionless and quiet.
I heard the door open but didn’t think about it. Then I heard an unusual voice say, “I come with claws sheathed, brother.” It sort of sounded like James Earl.
“Claws sheathed,” other voices said as my mind said, “What the hell?” I opened my eyes but didn’t otherwise move.
“Why are you here?” a voice like Howard Keel said. “You’re not allowed in here. You’re going to get in trouble with the people.”
“I come to speak about Michael with you,” James Earl said. He’s been sick.”
“I know he’s been sick,” Howard Keel said.
Locating the sounds, I lifted my head and turned it. The bedroom door was open. My four male cats were in a circle. It astonished me. Pape and Boo didn’t get along, Tucker and Boo didn’t get along, and Tucker and Pape didn’t get along.
I had to be dreaming. This didn’t make sense. Why the hell would my cats talk like humans? They’re cats. They have ways to communicate.
“I’m worried about him,” the James Earl voice said. That belonged to Tucker.
“So am I,” Quinn said in a Ray Ramano voice. “That’s why I urged Tucker to come in here. We need to talk about it. If Michael dies, we’ll depend on K to take care of us.”
“So?” Boo said. The big black tailless cat was Howard Keel. “She’s done it before.”
“That’s right,” Pape said in a Doogie Howser voice. “She always take care of me. She likes me.”
Boo stood. “That’s not the point,” Quinn said before Boo could speak or do anything more. “Yes, she’ll take care of us, but I assure you, it’ll be minimal. I’ve lived with them longer than any of you. Michael used to be gone all the time. She took care of us when he was, but it’s not the same. She has an iron will. She can’t be manipulated like him. He’s a soft touch. You can’t give her a mew and a purr and get a treat or catnip. There’s little lap time with her. Trust me, it’s different.”
A cough welled up in me. I swallowed it down and fought to keep it in.
Tucker nodded. “I’ve been around long enough to witness what Quinn says. I can testify that it’s truth.”
“Okay,” Pape said. “So what can we do?”
“We can do our best to keep him alive,” Quinn said.
Pape said, “We’re cats. I don’t see how.”
“Monitor him,” Quinn said. “More than we usually do. Stay on him and with him. Pray to the Nine Lives that they hear our concerns and answer our prayers. Show Michael that we care so that he’ll care and fight to stay alive.”
“You really think it’s that bad?” Boo said.
I launched into a coughing spasm. When it finished, the door was closed and the cats were gone, except for Quinn. Tail up, he grumewed over the bed toward me.
After blowing my nose and wiping my eyes, I put my head down and thought about what I’d seen and heard. It had to be a fever dream. Cats don’t talk human languages.
“Mew,” Quinn said to me. Purrs pouring out of him, he bit my cheek in a gentle love bite and then nestled tight against the side of my head. His purrs thrummed through my skull.
Yes, it had to be a dream.