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The Music in My Head

My Dream World

By Rick Henry Christopher Published 3 years ago 5 min read
The Music in My Head
Photo by Eric Nopanen on Unsplash

The Music in My Head

At this point in time my life is extremely challenging.

Let me start with September 2019. I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. This was a tough time in my life. I didn't think it could get any worse.

The doctors told me I had a few options: surgery or radiation. I opted for the latter.

The radiation treatments were scheduled to start in March 2020, but because of the pandemic the doctor postponed the treatments.

Finally the treatments began in August 2020. I went for 20 treatments within a span of 4 weeks. I was very happy when that ended.

In the ensuing months I have had blood work done to measure my PSA level. Each result has fortunately been lower than the previous. The last test had me with a very low PSA level of 1.1.

Prostate cancer was a shocker but it looks like I've got it licked.

Day by day I was working my way back to health. Then bang, my 84 year old mom gets sick - very sick. By the way, I am 61. One day - out of the blue - in the beginning of November 2020 she starts seeing hallucinations. The first day she is sitting on her bed in her bedroom but she thinks she is sitting at a bus stop waiting for a bus that never comes. She's seeing all different kinds of people walking by and talking and looking and the cars driving back and forth. She sees this whole world around her as she's sitting at this bus stop. And mind you my mom is not only elderly but she is 100% blind. She lost her eyesight back in the year 2010 from glaucoma. It was a gradual loss of eyesight; she was diagnosed with glaucoma and 1980.

After nine days of dealing with my mom's hallucinations at home, with daily calls to her doctor, my brother and I finally decided this is way above our range of knowledge and experience. We ended up taking her to the emergency room. From there she ended up in the hospital where she stayed for three weeks. That was a very tough three weeks because we were not able to visit her due to covid. There she was an 84 year old blind lady who is also very hard of hearing in the hospital and she has no clue where she's at or what's happening to her. This was one of the most stressful times in my life.

She came back home from the hospital in December 2020 but she was not the same. How taking all sorts of medications for dementia and major depressive disorder. She was also in a continent. My brother and I had to learn how to care for her because now she needed round-the-clock 24/7 care.

It was tough but we figured it out. We did a lot of Google searches and watched a lot of YouTube videos and learned how to care for an elderly incontinent woman with dementia and depression. I think my brother and I did an outstanding job.

My brother and I had everything set up perfectly. He took on a part-time job working from 4 a.m. to 10 a.m. and then I went to work from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. That way there was always one of us at home with our mom. We have the system dialed in and it was working very well.

But then something very odd happened near the end of January 2021. My brother unexpectedly became ill and he ended up in the hospital. After four days in the hospital he did not make it and he passed away.

Now, I am alone to take care of my mom. I have not had a paycheck since January 2021. We are living on my mom's $1,500 a month social security check.

Caring for an elderly person who is physically, mentally, emotionally challenging... Not to mention the pent up emotions I have regarding my brothers death.

So, this brings me to what it is that gives me an inner peace.

Vocal has opened an entire new avenue for me. I have been a blogger and a creator of many Facebook groups for the past 20 years now. Most of my writing has been music-related music lists and interviews and stuff like that. But being with Vocal has helped me to stretch my scope of what I write. I'm writing all types of things I never would have written before. So this has been a major release for me a way to just get my mind off of what's going on here at my home. But this is not my number one form of inner peace.

My top form of inner peace is and has always been music.

I started collecting music back in 1972, I was 12 years old. My favorites were Paul Simon, Bread, Carpenters, Neil Young, Carole King, James Taylor, and Carly Simon. The 1970s was a magical era for music.

As the decades have past my tastes in music have grown way post the Top 40.

My interests have expanded into jazz, hard rock, alt-rock, funk, and synth.

In the current day when things get rough due to my mom's worsening dementia, I will do whatever it takes to calm her down and sleep. Sometimes it happens quickly, other times it can take as many as 5 to 6 hours.

Once she's down and sleeping the headphones go on and little by little I travel from this torrid world of Rick Henry and wondrously arrive into the dreamy world of Pink Floyd followed by the sparkling jazz sounds of Esperanza Spalding.

I'm taken to a world where nothing really matters except for the sounds of each magnificently placed instrument and the beautifully performed vocals.

This is my world where I am first and foremost. Where I get to say how much or how little. The effort is little but the result is magnificent.

This is my world that exists so beautifully until my mom wakes up again and my world once more turns into chaos, confusion, and torment.


About the Creator

Rick Henry Christopher

Writing is a distraction to fulfill my need for intellectual stimulus, emotional release, and soothing the bruises of the day.

The shattered pieces of life will not discourage me.


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