A little stretch on the title there but “apparition” doesn’t lend it self to word play willingly.
So, for those that aren’t in my incredibly tiny social circle, I’m a parent now. Yup. Wearin’ the daddy pants. Have been for about two weeks now.
It’s a boy, thanks for asking.
And, as a new parent, I’ve become host to all sorts of things I never realized existed. Piss to the face, I expected. Feces on the hands, braced myself. Lack of sleep, totally aware. But there’s one thing that nothing warned me about, and those are the mind bending hallucinations.
It all started about a week in. I was laying in bed, trying to get some much needed sleep for my first day back to work. I was not a fan of this idea as I am now filled with a crazy, animalistic need to destroy anything that keeps my child away from me. But I went to bed and…didn’t exactly sleep. I was hit with what I can only describe as hallucinations. In this case, I couldn’t sleep comfortably because I knew, deep down, that my son had some how climbed into bed with me and if I moved, I was smother him to death.
If it wasn’t that, I would fall asleep and immediately wake up panicked because not only did I think he was in my bed, but my blanket had pilled up on top of him, suffocating him.
Bear in mind, the whole time I was having these panicked assaults, my son was safely in his room, in his crib. Or, in one instance, being audibly diaper changed by my wife. So I KNEW he couldn’t possibly be there.
I thought I was losing it. Looking things up online had nothing about this. Nothing usable anyways.
I shrugged it off and went to work.
That’s when things got even nuttier. I was sitting in my cubicle at work with my head phones on listening to the audiobook of Interworld (which, for the record, is fucking incredible. Read it) and I noticed some audio that wasn’t in the book. I heard my son crying. Yup. I heard the sound of my son crying while I was miles away in a cubicle at work.
This happened multiple times over the span of three days. One of the times, three days in, I stood up to shake it off and I noticed the new girl in the cubicle next to me had pictures of her little kid all over her cubicle walls so…I figured it was a safe bet she was a new parent.
I leaned over and got her attention and this is EXACTLY how the conversation panned out:
Me: Hey, weird question for you. You remember when your kid was first born pretty well?
Her: Totally. What’s up?
Me: Well…this is going to sound nuts, but, when you went back to work for the first time…did you ever…
Her (cutting me off): Hear your kid cry?
Me: *nods up and down excitedly*
Her: Yup. Totally normal.
So, it turns out that I wasn’t nuts. Or if I was nuts, it was a kind of nuts that was pretty common among new parents. Fun. In fact, I ran into another friend/co-worker that told me he had similar hallucinations upon returning back to work.
That’s crazy sauce. No one ever mentioned anything like this. And even the doctor’s in the hospital said nothing about it and, when I asked, said they hadn’t heard of people experiencing this. Though…it could just be parents not wanting to say things to their doctors that could be cause for them to have their children removed.
But yeah. This is totally a thing that exists and, as of today, I’ve had eight people share similar stories with me. So, if this has EVER happened to you, let me know in the comments. Share your stories.