Until We Meet Again

January 25…Write a story about someone’s hospital stay.

Micah listened to the machine beeping in the room next door to him. He was tired of the sound, but there was no place for him to go. He stared up at the ceiling, counting the tiles one more time. 70. It was always 70. They were cut in odd shapes, and he felt there should be fewer, but he always got 70.

He’d been staring at the same ceiling for 3 weeks now. Daily, the nurses and hospital staff helped him shift his body around the best they could, but it was never by much. How could it be when he’d had so much broken?

He sighed heavily, drew in a breath, then winced as pain shot through his ribs. He should have known better than to try to breath deeply again. Multiple broken ribs didn’t make this any easier.

Micah tried to take a shorter breath. It hurt, but not nearly as much as the deeper one had. Five broken ribs, a broken scapula, a broken wrist, and a shattered arm bone was just the beginning for him. He’d also broken his right hip, dislocated it and snapped the leg bone on his left. His toes had been shattered as well, and they’ve had to amputate from the knee down.

As far as he was concerned, he was never going to get on an airplane again, no matter how far away the destination was. He remembered every moment. From the time the pilot had said they were going down, until the plane came to its final stop on the ground, when the parts of the airplane bounced around and slammed into his body, and he found himself thrown from one side to the other along with the other passengers, he remembered all of it.

Emerson’s eyes came to mind. When their bodies had finally come to rest on the other side of the airplane, Micah had open his eyes to see Emerson’s green ones staring at him. He would never forget them, but even in that moment he knew it was too late for his friend. He closed his eyes tight and tried to block out the image. The memory haunted his nightmares and consumed his daily waking moments. A piece of metal from the airplane had stopped Emerson from falling on top of him, but not before it had nearly sliced his brother into. His limp body had hung over top of him, the fresh blood felt hot as it dripped down on Micah’s body.

Emerson’s eyes looked hallow. His life was gone. Micah wanted to let the breath go out of him in that moment, but instead he’d forced himself to draw another breath in. He could barely breathe and he knew he didn’t have a lot of time, but he wasn’t about to end up like Emerson. He was tired, more tired than he’d ever been in his life but he knew if he gave in to the tiredness he would never wake again on this Earth.

The machine next door beeped loudly again, bringing Micah back to the here and now. He was annoyed with the sound and yet it reminded him he was still here, even if most of his friends and family weren’t. He was a fighter and he knew he would make it through. His journey would be long and hard but it would be worth it in the end.

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