It’s shocking. It wakes me before dawn. I roll over and open my eyes. My body huddles under the blankets. My optic nerve struggles to process the dark images around me as my heart beats faster. It looks like something is in my bedroom doorway. Stockton and my terriers snooze undisturbed. I mumble in confused fear. I hold my breath. Then the silicone oil settles against my retinas and my sight clears–as much as my low vision can adjust–and I realize it’s my poor vision distorting regular shadows and ordinary objects. No monster. Just some faulty retinas. Nothing to see here, folks, really.
It can be odd living with a visual impairment. It can feel like many people sympathize but not too many can empathize. Yesterday I watched an amusing video from Fashioneyesta, another lady on the blogosphere with a visual impairment. She recounts with her unique sense of humor, “scary things about being visually impaired,” including morphing objects. I learned I have company with the weird-things-around-doors issue. Sweet.
Distortions in the middle of the night are annoying, but even worse–my sleep habits affect others. I talk in my sleep. Stockton was puzzled when I spoke mid-sleep years ago in our apartment. I would startle him with my declarations. A few times I bolted upright as I talked, too. Usually I said nonsense, but sometimes it was relevant to work stress or other life issues. Even in idyllic Mayberry, he anticipates the behavior weekly. Sleep talking must be my hidden talent.
Whenever I burst out a sentence past midnight, Stockton shakes me awake. In the moment, I huff and flip over, head sinking into the pillow. If I really act foolish, he texts me the nocturnal phrases for future giggles.
When nightfall hits Mayberry, there’s a good chance we’re only a few hours from a mini-dissertation, but like the shadowy monsters at my doorway, they’ll depart by morning.
Do you talk in your sleep or mistake things in your twilight slumber? Tell me about it.