It was a rough night. Jack was up three or four times, at one point wandering through the house – something he’s never done. I probably managed to get about four hours. I surrendered and got up two hours earlier than I usually do.
I looked around. Everything was bright
and clear; sharp-edged, as if I could slice my hand open
(no, not today)
on the edge of a pillow.
The colors were intense
(I’m just tired)
almost to the point of overwhelming me.
O and I walked to the garden and I said ‘June’ when I meant ‘
(it’s been months)
and ‘diamond’ when I meant ‘dry patch’.
Everything so bright, so clear, so there.
It always goes this way, just before it goes away.
As if to point out what I'm about to lose.
It starts with a circle of radiating lines, like the end of a child’s bubble wand, right in the center of my vision. Then the circle goes grey. Straight ahead there is nothing. I can blot out your face, blot out the sun.
Then it spreads. Sometimes evenly, sometimes in a chain, if that means anything.
A road of grey, of nothing, winding through my field of vision, dividing it into pieces like a mosaic.
Bright, bright pieces.
I told O, another ocular.
No. Not yet.
G.’s meeting me at the warehouse…
I’ll be fine.
I’ll call you…you call me, I can come home after.
No. It’ll be fine.
I think I’m just dehydrated.
Yes, you’re stressed.
Take some aspirin.
So I did. And four cups of coffee. Caffeine, the substance that holds me together.
The boyos were understanding. Jack curled up with me, unusually affectionate. And Declan, bless him, actually unloaded the dishwasher by himself, leaving the glasses because they are breakable. He did this on his own. And then he carried three potted Gerber daisies I’d bought the day before out to the garden.
Amazing kids. They’re three and a half.
It passed without much pain, except for the reminder that my brain is just a piece of malfunctioning meat that I’m going to have to deal with before much longer. Though I can keep telling myself that it’s only sleep-deprivation, only dehydration, only stress, and that the episodes come and go, come and go, always go, always.