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Something to Be Thankful For

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Looking through social networking sites, the majority of people wrote what they were thankful for. I could not help pitying myself since this Thanksgiving my leg was wrapped in a bandage. It had only been a day since I had surgery on my leg to remove my metal plate. I had been itchy due to a mild allergic reaction. What a great Thanksgiving, I thought miserably.

I had to wash my hair in the sink because I couldn’t get my leg wet. Leaning my head back, suddenly I felt as if there was a lump in my throat. Swallowing grew tedious and painful and I found it difficult to catch my breath. It was almost as if I had been sprinting ten miles. I tried to tell my mom, but the words barely escaped my mouth. Terrified, my mom screamed to my father, “Call 911! Erica can’t breathe! Call 911!” As my dad was on the phone frantically talking, my mom made me swallow a Benadryl. “Am I going to die?” I asked; my voice was wet with tears. “Please don’t let me die.” My mom promised that she wouldn’t let me die.

I heard the creak of the front door. A policewoman stepped in, her uniform on. She was carrying a large box adorned with a handle. She then unlatched the lock and took out an oxygen mask. To lighten the mood, she told me a story of how she had been in a car accident and the paramedics had to cut off her shirt in order to help her. I pretended to laugh and I hardly feared that it may sound like a whimper.
I saw the flashing lights’ shadow on the kitchen floor. A paramedic came in and immediately shot me with a needle. The needle had barely fazed me, for now I was hyperventilating. I was slightly horrified by the blood that splattered the tan wall like a mural. She kept asking if it was hard to breathe and I gave her a mere nod in response. The paramedic then told the other ambulance workers to “get the stretcher.” Everything was in slow motion, almost like a dream. Two volunteers came in my house with a stretcher and I was lifted onto it.
This all felt like a dream, a grotesque nightmare that had emerged from somewhere in my mind. I kept attempting to imagine that this may be just my imagination. Perhaps, I had fallen asleep. When I woke up everything would be just fine. Did dreams ever feel this real?
All three ambulance workers lifted me onto the gurney. Two were in the front and one was in the back. I felt tears flood my eyes, despite the fact that I was trying to hold them back.
The back of the ambulance was notably bumpy. I felt myself being knocked from side to side and tried to keep my balance. I watched as all of the cars passed by us. The sounds of the sirens were faint from the inside. As soon as the hospital came into view, I realized that all of this was quite real. My life did not flash before my eyes. I hardly had time to think let alone lament on words I could have said or actions I could have done. I tried praying to God, hoping he would hear my prayers and let me stay here. I wouldn’t ask for much more. What more could I covet?
The doors of the ambulance opened, revealing a harsh mid-November sun. The paramedics wheeled me into the hospital and waited for a nurse, Alice. Suddenly the thought occurred to me that all of these nurses, volunteers, and police had been working on Thanksgiving. They were saving peoples’ lives on a day of celebrating family, love, and blessings. I had never seriously looked at it with such a perspective. I have always appreciated my blessings, but I never realized that so many people would work on this day to help others keep their blessings.
As soon as I entered the hospital room, I was thirsty. The nurse took my blood pressure and oxygen level and then I asked for water. Because of my allergic reaction, they compromised and gave me ice chips.
A doctor came in and examined me. None of this commotion was registering in my brain. I was tired and the more I concentrated on the stress, the more exhausted I became. Before I knew it, I was asleep.
I was being wheeled on a gurney. Everything appeared so unfamiliar. The nurses were taking me to get a CAT scan done.
An hour crawled by and then I was released from the hospital. It would be nice to be in the comfort of my own home once again. Nothing has changed except my state of mind.




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