A Glimpse Into Another Lifetime
March 3, 2012 § 2 Comments
Just something that came to me today . . . .
I hope you enjoy reading this
What’s reality and what’s dream?
Don’t care, doesn’t matter.
I just want to go back.
Go back to living, laughing, and loving.
My friend made a comment that sent me into one of my usual laugh attacks. Though I was drinking questionably-flavored water at the same time so I proceeded to choke instead. As I got myself back under control, I could feel the gulp of water slide painfully down my trachea — a literall “down the wrong pipe”. A small, hard bead just squeezing its way down a conduit too narrow for it.
A common enough occurrence, as sad as that sounds. I laugh a lot so it’s inevitable. It was a little more painful than usual, but nothing new, so no big deal, right?
And then my vision went black, immediately replaced with blindingly cold clouds sweeping past like something out of a Ghibli movie.
When they cleared, there spread before me was a greenish-white landscape, as if two images, one of rolling green summer fields, the other of gently-knolled winter meadows, were superimposed on each other with neither being the foreground nor the background. They were separate, distinct, yet one and the same.
It was disorienting, unsettling, and breathtakingly beautiful.
The landscape drifted by at different speeds, as if I was simultaneously admiring it from a train and gazing at it as I strolled by.
And then there buildings, squished together companionably like passengers on a train. Brownstone, old buildings that exuded a sort of warmth and openness — a welcoming sort of aura in that anonymous European city.
And always, always, that green-white landscape floating just under the surface of my vision.
There were people — family, friends, random passersby I would smile at because that was just how I was, always trying to spread a little good cheer. I don’t remember names or even faces; there’s just this general sense that that’s the kind of people who were there.
Good feelings all around. Happiness, fun, so much fun. Wrapping around me and permeating into my being like a relaxing, fragrant soak in the bathtub. So carefree, free from any worries, any stress.
Who gave a damn about academics, degrees? Future goals, desires, careers, life purpose(s)? Future everything? To hell with my weight and love and sexuality — single or in a relationship, both are horrid and great. Fuck what my friends think, what my family thinks, what I think of myself.
Stop worrying and just live. Live in this moment, this present.
Time was flowing, flowing, flowing so fast that it ran over an unfelt, invisible waterfall and became an endless, infinite mist. Time was so fast that it was slow, achingly slow. It was a roaring flood yet a placid, still lake. Time was ambiguous, undefined, immeasurable.
In that timeless, shifting landscape with familiar strangers, I just lived, laughed, and loved.
Euphoria . . .
And then everything was shaking, shaking, shaking! Trembling, quivering, shuddering, quaking — !
All the laughters and smiles, all that good feeling, drifted away like so many rumors on the wind. Anonymous friends and strangers alike dissipated in the blink of an eye. Then the landscape, oh that stunning, protean green-white landscape with the old, brownstone buildings! Gone! Gone, gone, gone! Faded away like so much smoke.
And then I felt my very being, my essence, shaking apart, shaking, shaking, shaking into so many metaphysical particles — !
“Lia, Lia, oh my god, Lia!” Someone was gripping me tightly, shouting into my face. The blackness was momentarily restored as my vision swam and my ears were filled with semi-familiar sounds.
Where was I?
I was first aware of a garishly neon pink light. Then the blackness melted away wisp by smoky wisp till I could see I was inside a tackily quaint vintage 50’s diner car. A growing migraine pounded behind my forehead.
Why the hell am I here?
I slowly gazed left, then right. Cici was next to me, the one holding me as I slumped against her. I straightened up cautiously, confused on how I ended up there. Cici kept a wary hand on my shoulder. Adele and Maureen were across from me in the booth. All three were staring at me, shock, fear, and concern running rampant over their faces.
Why are they here? What the hell are we doing here?
“Are you okay?! Oh my god, I think you just had a seizure!”
Who was saying that? Seizure what? What the hell is going on?
Where are we and why are we here!?
My friends babbled on, their words blurring and spilling over each other into white noise.
In a daze, I asked, “What? What did I do? What happened?”
“You, like, slumped forward like you were about to take a nap,” Cici provided, “And I thought you were playing a joke but then you started shaking like crazy and I was like, ‘This is no joke!'” Her voice broke a little at the end.
The next question that swam through my murky bewilderment was, “How long?”
“Only a couple of seconds,” Maureen answered, doe eyes wide with emotion.
What! It felt like years had passed in that landscape; my internal body clock said it felt more like an hour passed in deep sleep. Regardless, how could it have been only a couple of seconds?!
The migraine pounded on.
Bit by bit, the evening filtered back to me. That’s right, a group of us had come out for a “girls’ night out”, those were our other friends in the next booth over, and we were eating and chatting and laughing and I was painfully swallowing a bead of water down my windpipe.
What the fuck happened after that?
This world, this reality with the diner and the oily food and hot spiced cider didn’t feel real. This gathering, this “night out”, the cars rushing past the window on the street just outside, the location, the event, the people no longer felt real. I remembered what lead to me being there but that didn’t make me feel any more like I “fit in”.
It was like that moment where I become lucid while dreaming so then I can step away and observe the dream happening even as I participated in it. I no longer belonged in the current reality.
I could barely remembered what I dreamed. If you could call all that a dream. I think I called it a hallucination at first. But at the moment, despite its ephemeral existence, it had felt more real. Like this diner was the dream and that landscape with smiles and laughter was the reality.
I ached to go back.
What did I see? A conglomeration of my memories, metamorphosed into something that seemed novel? Or another lifetime, another me, in another reality?
Regardless, I wanted to go back. This feeling of ‘unreality’ was unbearable.
It’s six hours later. The migraine has faded away by now and with it, that strange out-of-place sensation. I’m now back in my own skin, so to speak.
But the yearning for that alternate reality, that beautifully mercurial landscape with the warm brownstone buildings, goodwill smiles, and carefree happiness — the pull is still there, ever so small and infinitesimal.
Ever so persistent.