In the last weeks of my father’s life he told me about a man who would come into his house at night and lay down in the bed next to him. Frightened, he would call the authorities.
It was the first of many hallucinations, some benign, many terrifying, he experienced before he passed. I learned it was futile to try to convince him that what he saw hadn’t been real. I wish I had heard this TedTalk to help me better understand what was happening.
Oliver Sacks has passed but his experiences, wisdom and compassion remains with us in his talks and books. You might know about him from Robin Williams portrayal in the Movie Awakenings. Take a look and listen to Dr. Sacks’ TedTalk:
“Neurologist and author Oliver Sacks brings our attention to Charles Bonnet syndrome — when visually impaired people experience lucid hallucinations. He describes the experiences of his patients in heartwarming detail and walks us through the biology of this under-reported phenomenon.”