My Whole Expanse I Cannot See…

I formulate infinity stored deep inside of me…

Feb 23

You can’t breathe

Category: Creative Flash,Life

You can’t breathe. It’s hardware failure, the machine that pumps air into a hose that connects to a hole in your throat is letting you down. That isn’t exactly right, it’s really the hose that’s letting you down, an unexpected disconnection. Air that’s supposed to be rushing into your lungs is rushing nowhere in particular, steady and quiet-like. You’re quiet too, you can’t yell, you can’t move. You’re also quite alone, alone and not breathing.

Taking a moment, after the initial shock fades, you find that you can manage little gulps of air. The muscles in your chest aren’t entirely useless. So, you breathe small breaths, shallow breaths. You know that these breaths will be gone soon enough, that your chest will tire of its job. All you can do is space your breathing, not waste anything in panic. There’s really no reason to panic. Someone will either find you, or they won’t. You’ll either die, or you won’t. You’re strangely calm on these points.

You think about a woman, the one you used to think about to feel safe in these situations. You think about how she’s gone and far away, disconnected. You miss that connection to her more than you miss the connection that would bring air into your lungs. You know it’s ridiculous, but you also know it’s absolutely true. You wonder if you’ll ever feel that kind of connection again. You wonder if you’ll write about this later. You hear air rushing to nowhere, you wait.


8 Comments so far

  1. Alex Carnegie February 23rd, 2009 1:05 pm

    After a separation it can be almost like learning to live/breathe again. It can be like suffering a bereavement or a drastic injury (although I have no experience of the latter) and it can be a long process of recovery.

    Liking the second person again by the way Mr Phillips

  2. Philip Dhingra February 23rd, 2009 2:15 pm

    This is a good read. I’m sorry you had to go through that.

  3. michael February 23rd, 2009 2:55 pm

    Alex: Thanks! Second-person is really fun to try.

    Philip: Don’t be sorry. Things happen, they get written.

  4. randy February 23rd, 2009 3:19 pm

    You sure pick the strangest times to be able to relax. Must be the Buddha in you. Most people would have freaked! That action (or lack thereof) may have aided your ability to recover.

  5. Ennis Drake February 23rd, 2009 5:55 pm

    Love it, Michael.

    PS: I’m working on a response to the e-mail. I had to reread the story. LOL! ; )

  6. teresa February 24th, 2009 12:54 am

    you clearly have more than 9 lives…obviously you still have some important work to do in this life!

  7. Angie February 24th, 2009 10:07 am

    This was very well written! I was gasping for air just reading it… my chest was constricting and I had to remind myself that I’m lucky enough to breathe without a machine. Great post.

  8. michael February 24th, 2009 11:08 am

    Angie: Thanks!