This weekend was a bit emotional for me; it marked one year since I was flown back to England, hospitalised and, after a thyroid storm that nearly killed me, being diagnosed with Graves Disease.
Today, as I look back I realise that the things I remember are very different to the things people around me remember. Ask my family and friends and they all have tales to tell – some are, with hindsight, funny, others are just plain sad.
They day before I was flown back to England I was discharged from hospital and my brother had arrived to take me back. On this day I had a house full of friends and well-wishers who had come to say goodbye – I think some questioned whether they would ever see me alive again.
I had no idea any of them were there.
I have absolutely no recollection of seeing anyone, in fact I have no memory of getting to the airport, the flight or the journey to my parents home. I have snippets of memory but that’s it.
I was so unwell that the crew on the aircraft wanted to radio ahead for an ambulance! I didn’t even know that until much later.
Then I was in hospital.
I remember such odd things – when I was taken out to the ambulance my Mam had just made tea; the ambulance crew pointing out landmarks on the journey and me thinking, “how stupid, there are blinds on the windows and I’m lying down”; being wheeled into a ward and being terrified as it was visiting time and the ward went silent and everyone stared at me as I went past.
And then the fun began….hallucinations!
I have vague memories of things that happened in the real world but the hallucinations were so real that even today I can feel the sensations, the feelings and see the things I saw very very clearly.
As I am typing this a strange feeling has come over me as I prepare to go back there, not a feeling of fear but something else just a bit ‘strange’. I had three vivid hallucinations, one of which was, I believe the point where I decided to fight and survive.
That is the one I want to share with you.
Let me start by saying that I have absolutely no idea where I was when I had this hallucination but I believe I was in ICU. It was dark, I think I was asleep and a nurse came to check my stats.
Only she wasn’t a nurse, she was evil, that was all I could feel; this evil woman was trying to kill me and I was freaking out. She wheeled me away in my bed and no one was listening to my cries for help. It got darker and darker and then I was in a room surrounded by witches.
I was in the hospital basement and no one knew what went on down there. The witches were all clothed in the most beautiful blue flowing cloaks and their heads were covered in blue too.
They were talking to me and trying to restrain me and I was convinced they were trying to do me ill. Then I looked around and I saw things that were familiar to my spiritual mind. The main thing was off to the left; a huge statue of Buddha sitting on a beautiful lotus throne. A monk was walking around the statue, he was dressed like a blue witch but I knew he was a monk.
There was one witch who would come to me and do stuff, which I would fight, then she would go and write on a board and every time she got something right there was a statue that would change shape and light up as if it was a puzzle she was solving. I was still fighting all of them, convinced that they were trying to do something terrible to me.
Then a man entered the room, he stood at the foot of my bed and he started to tell me about a new type of medicine – it was all natural he said, no chemicals and it was a new product that they wanted to try out on me as I was such a good candidate for holistic medicine.
Now anyone who knows me will know that I hate taking medicine, in fact I don’t even take paracetamol so this was bound to appeal to me. I remember listening to him and becoming calmer as he told me this was really going to help me but it was a huge secret and that’s why we were in the basement.
At that point I gave in to their help, I saw a beautiful glow around one of the witches as she approached me, she touched me and I was at peace and I completely trusted her and I drifted away with a warm feeling of being loved and cared for.
I still see those witches occasionally when I am very fatigued and have fitful sleep although I see them more as my guardian angels now and they always comfort me.