I don’t know what is up with my dreams lately.
The other night, I had a dream that my mom was having an affair, and she was gloating about it to me. I wanted her to tell my dad, but she wouldn’t. I was SO upset by it, when I woke up I couldn’t shake the feeling. I almost wanted to call my mom and ask her if anything was going on. I don’t know where it came from, or why it bothered me so much, but it was awful.
Last night, I went to bed knowing that Ronan had a fever. It was 101.9 at two in the afternoon, and when I checked it at his bed-time, it was 102.3. It’s the highest fever he’s ever had, and fevers always freak me out a little. I mean, seriously, besides some Motrin or Tylenol… maybe a cool bath, what really can I do? I hate falling into that spiral of taking his temperature over and over again, so I don’t. We put him to bed, and he slept well despite his fever.
But I laid in bed wide awake, trying not to imagine the worst possible scenario. No matter how hard I tried, my brain kept taking over and pulling my thoughts in directions I absolutely didn’t want them to go. There were so many ‘what if’s’ that I couldn’t shake them.
What if he isn’t alive when I wake up?
What if I should have him in bed with me right now?
What if his fever is 106 tomorrow morning?
He was sleeping soundly, and I didn’t see any reason to wake him up and bring him to bed with me… except for my own peace of mind. That wasn’t a good enough reason. So I left him. And my brain went crazy.
I imagined waking up and finding him so fevered that his skin felt like it was burning. I imagined taking him to the emergency room… not the Huntersville emergency room, but down town to the Children’s Hospital emergency room. I imagined him being weak and tired, and unable to fight back as they gave him an IV. I pictured them putting ice bags around him trying to lower his temperature. I pictured being alone in the room with him while we waited for a doctor to come see us. I held him as I felt him stop breathing, and screamed for help. I screamed and screamed. I laid in my bed and imagined myself doing CPR on my own son, that had stopped breathing for no understandable reason. I told myself, “Stop it Mandy, stop doing this,” as images flashed through my mind. I watched as my son was shocked with the defibrillators in an effort to restart his heart. In my own head, I screamed when the doctor pronounced him dead. I screamed and told the doctor he had no right to stop, and I continued trying to revive my baby.
I laid in bed, sobbing and alone, because I couldn’t stop the images. I couldn’t catch my breath, I couldn’t move. It was so real, and it was so horrible, and I just wanted it to end. I wanted to turn my brain off, stop thinking, stop worrying… and I couldn’t.
All I needed to do was reach over and wake up my husband. Or walk up to Ronan’s room and touch his face, to let me know he was okay. But I was paralyzed with fear, tortured with the horror of my waking nightmare.
Last night, I shuddered with the imagined thought of having to call my husband at work, and tell him his little boy had died. Last night, I rolled over on to my stomach, sobbed into my pillow, and cried myself to sleep.
Today? Ronan has a fever of 101.4. He’s active, eating, drinking, and feeling just a little clingy. But he’s doing just fine.