Tuesday, 21 October 2008

The wee small gremlins of the morning


If I should wake sometime between 2 am and 6 am, the gremlins usually come and find me. Sometimes it's a global warming gremlin, sometimes it's a killer comet gremlin. Or the world financial situation. Or Yellowstone National Park blowing us all sky high. (Oh, don't bother me about that last one; go ask Bill Bryson...) Or worse, there are the gremlins of things I'm failing to accomplish in my day-to-day existence such as helping younger daughter in her daily struggles or maintaining exercise resolutions. This morning, I woke from a fitful dream of taking photographs in a haunted library (which involved climbing a ladder and so slowed down my escape from the spectres), and a really nasty gremlin had me by the guts. The Resident Fan Boy returned from the bathroom to find me in a sweat: "If you die, I'm screwed! What will become of the girls? I don't know where the will is, or how to pay the mortgage, or where to send your body...."

Now, this is probably not something a husband wants to hear at the best of times, certainly not at five thirty in the morning of the day he's due to set off on a four-day business trip to Québec City. Add this to the fact that I'm addressing my concerns to the one of the chief Worrywarts of the Western World. This is a man who has spent days pacing and wondering why he hasn't received his free golf towel from the local pub. (He doesn't golf.)

Anyway, to give him his due, he held me close and whispered tenderly, "The first thing you do is notify the bank, and the second thing you do is notify my office." Of course, then I wondered about the wisdom of this because a) the bank would immediately freeze his accounts; and b) I only have his work number which leads to his voice mail ("Uh, hi darling, you're dead, so will your boss check this?"). However, I decided to leave such questions for the morning. Or slightly later in the morning, as RFB's alarm clock then went off and he had to get up. I went back to sleep and dreamt I was at some sort of Jerry Falwell camp and I needed to pack, take a shower and clean out some drawers that were full of grey muddy grunge.

In case I've worried any of you out there (I know there's at least five or six of you who check in here), we emailed our lawyer in Victoria for copies of our wills (because we can't find them); we phoned the insurance company (which has changed hands twice since we took our our policy); and we located the local branch of the Memorial Society (because our membership in the BC Memorial Society is unlikely to do us much good). The last has a fabulous web site which actually has a check list of "what to do when death occurs" --- in case you too were wondering. So if the Resident Fan Boy meets with tragedy in Québec City (say, if someone discovers his last name while he's touring the Plains of Abraham and takes umbrage)....well...I'm still screwed, but at least I have an idea of what to do.

9 comments:

Volly said...

As we say down here in the southern US,

Bless your heart!

...and quit eating pepperoni pizza & nachos before you go to bed...

;)

Persephone said...

Personally, I blame it on having The Year of Living Biblically as my bedtime reading this month....

Jaywalker said...

Oh sweetheart. I get these too, but mine go OHMYGOD I AM GOING TO DIE THERE IS NOTHING I CAN DO TO STOP IT.

Which is fun too. You need fellow insomniacs to IM or text message. That's what I do. Hey! It's morning in Belgium when you're having wobbles - you should mail me and I will make it a million times worse.

Jane Henry said...

Oh dear Persephone, I have tears rolling down my cheeks. I am sure that wasn't the slightest bit funny at the time, but your retelling is hilarious.

When my fil died we were all in a panic because he was the one in the family who always sorted the debts out. I knew my neighbours had suffered a recent bereavement, and (still in a state of shock having spent a morning with a dead body) I knocked on the door and said Do you know what to do when someone dies? which isn't the most neighbourly thing you can say... Luckily they did understand, but they couldn't remember as they'd been in too much shock too...

Persephone said...

Dear Jaywalker, When I was a little girl, I used to frighten myself by thinking "I'm real and I'm here!" which is kind of the opposite of what happens to you! (What I want to know is why can't the gremlins take the form of David Tennant? I mean, they say the devil has means to assume a pleasing shape -- why not gremlins?) I don't own a mobile phone and instant messaging gives me the heebie-jeebies; it puts so much pressure on me -- I can't type that fast and I like to spell things correctly....
Maybe I'll blunder my way down to the computer next time and email you...

Dear Jane, I used to volunteer for Victoria Hospice and was manning the phones in the office one day when an elderly couple phoned to ask what to do if their neighbour died. The neighbour was still alive, but, to quote Monty Python, not at all well. They couldn't think of anyone else to phone, and when you think of it, the local hospice is not a bad choice...
The link in my post to the Ottawa Memorial Society actually features a boffo list, much like the guidance Victoria Hospice provided when I was there. After all, this is something that will happen to us all, sooner or later...

bonnie-ann black said...

oh. my. gawd! i thought i was the only one who had these weird morbid thoughts... mine are usually just as i'm about to doze off and i get hit with the "I'm going to die!" thing, which makes me break out in a cold sweat... and then i have to get up and do stuff to distract me from this thought.

other things that have kept me awake or sneak in and bother me when i wake during the night: the sun is going to go supernova in 5 million years (well, it *did* keep me awake until i was assured that it was 5 *billion* years... so now it's low on the list), my nephews are *driving* (mind you, they no longer live with me, not even in the same state, but it keeps me up anyway), how will i ever retire? is another one, are my aunt's parakeets getting enough seed? (honestly, i once read a story in a bird magazine about how because the bird's dish was filled with seed pods, the lady thought it was food, and didn't feed the bird and it starved to death!)

and like persophone, i want David Tennant to appear before me and soothe all my worries away with wild passionate sex. and i told you before, P, hands off DT -- now you've given me something else to fret about. What if David Tennant is comforting Persophone at this very moment!?

Persephone said...

Alas, b.a.b, you can file that away in your "not gonna happen for the next five billion years" category --- unless I get my hands on a Tardis... Until then, that's just going to be a figment of my demented imagination. We take our comfort where we can. I suppose coaching my husband to speak in a Scottish accent would be wrong, wrong, wrong?

bonnie-ann black said...

P: i will try and comfort myself with the thought that you do not yet have a TARDIs.

also, i think it is a husband's duty to soothe his wife's fears and worries by adopting whatever makes it easier to sleep (because after he speaks to you in a scottish accent, you might have wild passionate sex, which is always good for sleep).

honestly, though, after seeing david tennant in Hamlet and Love's Labours Lost -- he's far more dynamic and attractive in person (slim and a little bit foxy, to quote) then he is on any of the shows i've seen him in. though it could be *The Doctor* i'm in love with, i'm not willing to make the distinction right now.

Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Oh this is just a brilliant post for so many reasons:
1) morbid panics - not just you, I am all too often overwhelmed by thoughts of those I love and/or me dying and what happens next (practically, not spiritually)
2) "chief Worrywarts of the Western World. This is a man who has spent days pacing and wondering why he hasn't received his free golf towel from the local pub. (He doesn't golf.)" - lovely to know that there is a collective to which I would also belong 'Worrywarts of the Western World'. Partner doesn't call me Eeyore for nothing.
3) TARDIS thoughts and training your husband to speak in a Scottish accent? SOOOOOO wrong, but oh SOOOO understandable!!!

And Bonnie? Yep, totally with you.