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“Hurry up Em,” bellowed my Mom over the roar of her boisterous hair dryer, “Get up and in the shower before Daddy beats you to it. You’re going to be late.” Her tone was soft, yet urgent pleading me to jump out of my bed right this instant. My dad leaves for work at 8:00. I leave for school around 8:00. One or the other would have to race against the clock. So a lot of times, it was a daily struggle to see who could manage to rouse first and race to the shower to consume all of the sweltering water and stay on time.
My eyes darted open, despite how heavy they felt, and shot towards the unset lavender alarm clock sitting on my bedside table. The bright red numbers shone bright piercing the time, 7:15. I could hear the thud of my Dad’s slippers against the carpeted stairs advancing by the second. There was no time to spare! I sprang out of bed like a gazelle when they realized they were being stalked by a lion. My body yearned to be under the cozy confines of my silky brown covers, but I sprinted to the bathroom not daring to let my dad win and take all of the warm water.
As I stumbled into the bathroom, I ignored the black dots forming in my vision, blinking vigorously. Light heads and blurred eye sight were common side effects when I bolted out of bed like that. Rapidly still, I threw my fuzzy pajamas onto the floor and hopped into the steamy shower. Nothing seemed out of place or wrong until the jets of water streamed down my back and I finally caught my breath.
All of the drowsiness that I had ignored just fell upon me like a ton of bricks. The scorching water, which usually woke me up with one splash, did nothing for my crusty eyes. In fact my blurred vision was returning. What is going on? No matter how many times I batted and rubbed my cloudy eyes, which usually made the feeling of a black out disappear, all I could see were the annoying little splotches. In fact, it got worse the more I tried to mend myself. My head was floating, as if there was nothing in it at all. My stomach was growling, begging me feel the scarce place.
Boom Boom. My ears rang pulsating in sync to the rhythm of my heart beat. Boom Boom. I felt like I had just stepped off of a loopty loop roller coaster. Boom Boom. By now everything in my surroundings had vanished, and I started assuming that I was going blind. Boom Boom. I gasped helplessly for air. Boom Boom. “Hand me the shampoo,” my dad commanded over the throbbing of my head.
“Oh my gosh,” I whined stuttering over the three simple words. Unable to see anything around me, I leaned against the smooth tiled walls trying to get a grip onto reality.My head was spinning around in circles, like in that scary movie, “The Exorcist.” Boom Boom. I tried to cry out to my family that there was something wrong, but my lips were sealed shut. Boom Boom. Physically and mentally I began slipping…slipping…slipping until I couldn’t hang on any longer.
“CALL 9-11!” screeched my mother who sounded far away, over the spraying of the shower.
“Did she bump her head?” my Dad yelled in the distance, the shock he felt relevant in his frantic tone. Ugh, I hope I don’t need stitches.
“Emma! Emma!” my Mom screamed, her minty breath was just inches away from my face, but her voice sounded afar, Wait wait, what is going on? My eyes flung open. Standing above me, with a towel wrapped around her wet hair was my mom pale from fright. My dad stood frozen in disbelief. I must have looked like a deer in head lights because I sure felt like one.
“Wh-wh-what happened?” I stammered as tears streamed down my white-from-fright face. My mom’s brittle hands grasped my shoulders as she tried tenaciously to untangle me from the now ruined shower curtain and stand me upright.
“It’s okay you just fainted,” she replied, a bit too uneasily to calm my weariness. As she led me back into the shower to wash the excess shampoo and soap off of my body, I felt myself become unstable once again.
“Uhh,” I sobbed as the haziness returned in my eye sight. My mom clutched my arms then, preventing me from toppling over another time. She led me to the bed, wrapped me up in a cocoon of blankets, and gently laid my head onto the billowing pillow. My matted down dirty blond hair sprawled across the bedspread, the salty drops still pricked at my brown eyes, and my small hands quivered violently.
“What’s wrong with me?” I couldn’t get over the overwhelming shock that I was feeling. This could not be normal. Weren’t teenage girls and number-one-fans supposed to faint in excitement when they saw someone like Justin Bieber or Lady Gaga? Surely, it’s not humane for some one to just randomly pass out while scrubbing their hair with shampoo. Weren’t “softies” supposed to faint from the sight of blood and guts? Surely, there must be something mentally wrong with me if I just fainted out of the blue like that. Weren’t fraidy-cats and nervous wrecks supposed to faint when a mouse scurried across the room or someone jumped out from behind them? Surely something must be amiss if I JUST FAINTED RANDOMLY IN THE SHOWER. No big deal…
My mom ordered my Dad to get me some orange juice while she forced the compact blood pressure cup onto my scrawny arm. While my dad sprung down the steps, I continued to ponder what deformities I might have. By the time my tremulous hands were around the glass of refreshing juice, and I gulped some down I was ten times better. Besides the tingling and gushing cut on my leg, which got the worse of the fall, I didn’t physically feel one bit wrong. I assured my mom of this when she sprung the worse of my fears upon me, “Well, I’m going to take you to the Atlantic City ER, so they can check you out.”
No matter how many times I whined, there was no way out. She kept repeating that it’s better to be safe than sorry. When I thought about the four inch needle that the doctors would stick into me to draw blood I had a mini heart attack. The imaginary sound of the monitors hooked up to my body scared the living daylights out of me. Thinking about the doctors staring down at me, I almost ran and hid in spite. I kept trying to convince my mom that I felt better, but her mind was set on getting me examined.
So we were off to the Emergency Room, even though I knew it wasn’t really necessary. When we arrived in the bright sterile environment i felt like there were monkeys in my stomach. The doctors assisted me right away with overly gracious smiles spread across their faces. They asked me what was wrong and I replied by telling them the entire story in a shivering voice. After hooking some odd looking machines up to my body, sucking the blood out of my arm with that mini vampire in a needle, and asking me four million questions, they finally assured me that I was okay. “Just don’t get up too fast,” the doctors joked with a chuckle. I felt like such an imbecile, fainting just because I jumped up out of bed too rapidly. But I knew that from now on I would hesitate to make sure no dots appeared in my vision, before I got into the shower.
“Emma,” my mom whispered gently shaking me out of my dreams the next morning, “it’s time to wake up and go to school. Take your time getting up.” She caressed the hair out of my face and gently kissed my forehead. I opened my eyes with such caution making sure that the blurry vision would not get in my way again today. I sat up slowly, slowly..so slowly that I felt like I was a turtle. My dad was in the shower already, using up all of that precious hot water. Ugh...Oh well. No turtle’s racing today.