As many of you know, I am a career Navy enlisted man who was brought up in the Navy, in the 1960's and 70s. I was in a career field that was dangerous and where fear was a definite weakness that could and would be exploited. Therefore, I learned to suppress fear to the point of non-existence. Yes, there are things that I feared. But, I killed them if I could or avoided them all together. Like snakes, spiders, and scorpions. I have been a self-assured, aggressive, loud, take charge person for all of my adult life. On my other Blog, I discuss some of the events in my Navy career that shaped me and the men who had great influence on me. So, I won't retrace those events here.
However, as my disease progresses, I am becoming more and more afraid. I am easily startled. To make matters worse, I have, and have had for quite some time, hallucinations that are increasing in frequency and realism. My visual hallucinations have progressed from small creatures running across the floor to people. I have even seen "something" speed by me while stopped at a stop light at an intersection. There was nothing, I know that, but I also know what I saw. I continue to feel someone touching me, and of course, there is no one there. Many times I hear voices, that are not there. If I am with someone, like my wife, I can talk to that person and my fears are relieved. Today, while my wife was at a Bible study and I was alone at home, I heard my wife's voice talking and the front door rattling. I was in the office and I knew she was not due home yet. She is always careful to let me know where she will be and when she will be home. This helps me and she knows it. In any case, today's auditory hallucination scared me! My heart was racing and my "Fight of Flight" reflexes were at peak alert. It took me until my wife came home to calm down. Rationally, after the first 5 minutes, I knew it was a hallucination, but that did not help me calm down. I told my wife upon her arrival home, and I felt better. But now, I am worried that soon,I may not be able to stay home alone, or go out alone on my own! This upsets me for the obvious reasons. I have been an independent, action oriented, combat ready sailor for a long time, and the thought, the reality, of that going away is daunting and depressing to me.
The person I was, is dying, and I don't like it.