Off work at 0100. Stayed up (and at work) all night playing a first person shooter game online, left shortly after 0700. Can't tell you anything about those six hours, other than that I don't know where they went. Breakfast at McDonalds, plus sitting there for a while playing on my phone. Then back home. Ran into the resident building manager, who told me I look like hell and in need of sleep.
It takes a veteran who's been through hell, and is thus acquainted with what hell looks like, to tell another veteran that they look like hell.
Sign in on the clipboard, realize I forgot yesterday so I sign in for yesterday too. House rule is that you have to sign in daily, to let everyone know that you're still here and doing ok. If you don't, someone comes looking for you to see if you need help. Upstairs, door open, bag on floor, off to bed forgetting to take bedtime meds. Wake up an hour before I have to go back to work. Realize I didn't take bedtime meds. Shit. Take morning meds, load up key chain pill carrier, get dressed and cleaned up, grab backpack, off to work. and here I am.
Hurricane Sandy is clogging up my mind-- it's hard to read any news online that's not talking about the aftermath in New York and New Jersey and everywhere else. No power, no water, no food, the place looks like a war zone. It's all a trigger for me. Hurricane Katrina was the same way. Troops, trucks, equipment being deployed. Desperate times call for desperate measures. I wonder when (not if) the disaster will happen here. Same feeling as wondering about the past war and the next war. Alertness. Readiness. Awareness. Winter is coming soon-- time for winter preparedness. Get a bad enough winter storm, could be no power or food (or heat) for a while here. Who knows? It. Could. Happen.
Perhaps it is that Sandy reminds me of Katrina, which reminded me of Desert Shield-- that period of time after something bad happens that the world seems to have shifted, something has gone terribly wrong, and it takes everyone to respond. Most people see damage from a hurricane and it is just that. I see what I imagine, and there is no difference to me between damage from a hurricane and damage from the attacks on 9/11.
This could happen here. This could happen to more than one place at a time. What if two storms hit at the same time, one in the Atlantic and one in the Gulf of Mexico? What if someone sees that as an opportunity, and blows up something big in California at the same time? What if my car breaks down in the middle of nowhere in the middle of a winter storm/blizzard? What if I become homeless? Broke? Injured? Disabled?
All of this goes through my mind in less than a second, once I'm triggered.
Sixty seconds in a minute.
Sixty minutes in an hour.
Twenty four hours in a day.
I've heard that dreams are how the brain processes everything the senses acquire, but if that's so my sensors must be off. I dream stuff that doesn't make any sense. My dreams have places, people, and events that appear in more than one dream sometimes. They involve people that I haven't seen in years. Places that look like places I know, but they're not the same. The places persist. I go back to them more than once.
It reminds me of the places that exist in Springfield on The Simpsons. If a place is needed, it gets made.
A few nights, or a few weeks ago (I can't tell which), I had a dream where I was back in the military. I'd been called up. This is a recurring dream. Sometimes it's an organized muster, sometimes not. Something happened that needs a big response. Somewhere in the dream, someone sends me a letter-- I don't know who, or why, or what the letter is for. That dream ends.
Two nights (sleeping segments more like) ago, I had another similar dream. The timeline, the plot, whatever a dream has, was different, or maybe it was related? I don't remember. I do know that I receive the letter, and as I'm getting into my car I toss the open envelope with the letter inside on the passenger seat. The writing on the front of the envelope is red.