Maybe, just maybe, your subconscious awareness that your pillow was soaked in a chemical that disrupted your brain has been keeping you up at night. For what it's worth, Brominated Flame Retardants, or BFRs, are used in many places where we live and work. BFRs are neurotoxins...... That's a bummer. Not only is there another thing we use often that has negative health implications, but it's something we (hopefully) use daily and for five to nine hours... on our face!
I have no idea whether my pillow was dunked in BFR before it was shipped off to me and I'm really not even sure how to find out. It would be great if there were a retail location where I could just bring my pillow to have it tested - maybe bring in my water, too: some from the tap and some from post-filtration - I'd pay $25 to know if it even made a difference and what was in the water I drink and bathe in every day -- would you? How much would it cost to purchase the equipment necessary for such testing? It would be fantastic if funding could enable such services to be provided for free. If the local water conditionas are not good, though, municipal entities might fear such a venue and prevent it from coming to be by blocking permits, etc.
Such a resource still does not answer the question, "What do we do with pillows and other household goods soaked in chemicals we decide we don't want, like PVC & BFR?" I've seen resources for What-to-do-with-your-PVC-shower-curtain, including lining your garbage cans with them. Annie Leonard, maybe? Check out her Story of Stuf if you haven't. As for pillows, I'm not sure -- maybe grind them up and integrate them into building insulation products? Yuck. That kind of thinking can't be good for firemen: when buildings go up and they have to come in to put them out, all kinds of nasty stuff is likely to be burning (and off-gasing) around them.
Since originally posting this, I've discovered buckwheat hull pillows, which are amazing, and down pillows, which we all knew were prety great, already ;) I'm sleeping easier, too :)