Near Death Experience

A true story.

She sighs, staring blankly at the computer screen, fingers tapping lightly on the keyboard but pressing nothing. She knows what she wants to say, or rather she thinks she does. Somehow the words just won’t come out. She’s typed and deleted several times already, every attempt just reading wrong.

“Close your eyes and count to ten” she thinks. A good exercise for calming the mind, enough that one can begin to think straight. She does so, opening her eyes looking down onto her hands. A small movement in the corner of her eye catches her attention. She doesn’t need to look down, that would waste time. Instead, she throws her laptop across the bed and leaps to the other side of the room, drawing in a sharp breath as she does so.

“Crap, I need to save my pyjamas” she thinks and darts forward and back again in a fluid motion, flicking her pyjama bottoms out of harms way. Standing first on one foot, then the other, she chews her lip as she tries to work out what to do. No need to scream for help, that would be daft given that she’s a grown woman. The temptation is there though and she fights the urge to give in to it.

“Can’t do the eye closing counting thing now…” her mind wanders before she snaps herself back to attention. What to do? Softly creeping around the bed, she looks around quickly, assessing the situation. Ah, an empty pint glass sits on her bedside table. She’ll have to be quick though, if she wants to save herself. She takes a moment to steady her nerves.

Whoosh. In one rapid movement she seizes the glass and up-ends it onto the mattress. The threat contained, she breathes a little easier. Catching herself starting to relax, she curses. Now is no time to let her guard down, she still has to remove it somehow. And that means going closer…

Somehow she remembers to open the window first. Holding her breath and miraculously stilling her shaking hands, she slides a card underneath the empty glass. She lets her breath out, counts to three and draws in another one. Hold it…it’s now or never…she slowly and smoothly lifts the glass and the card as one. No gaps between them or the whole gig is up. She makes it to the window. One last hurdle to go. In the quickest blink of an eye she flicks the glass towards the open window.

Suddenly she can breathe right again and her limbs have stopped trembling. The spider is gone. She survived.

Being that close to death has made her think though. She sits back down and suddenly the words flow without a second thought. Her mind releases the thoughts freely and easily. Having her life flash before her eyes has woken something up.

All of these worries she’s been having lately, all of these doubting negative thoughts. None of them mean anything. They are worthless. She suddenly realises she shouldn’t be thinking like that, shouldn’t be listening to that part of her brain.

There are no guarantees in this world. Tomorrow is not promised. She knows that now. Life can end in the blink of an eye, and as such should not be wasted. When it comes to the things that matter, we only have today, right now. We can’t know that time will be kind to us. If something is important, it should demand our attention now, not tomorrow or in a weeks time when the weather is better, now. Because if we miss our chance to grab it, we might never get another.

She smiles triumphantly as she looks in the mirror.
“Your life is worth having” she tells her reflection. And she makes a decision. She doesn’t know when the next spider may strike, and she may not be as quick of the mark next time. She was saved by her own lightening reflexes today, but tomorrow she might not be so lucky. And so she realises how important it is to appreciate every second she has. Her life is a thing of beauty.

If you want to do something, find a way of doing it. If you don’t, just say no. If you love someone, tell them. If someone loves you, take it all in. Drink the coffee, smell the flowers, ride horses, drive too fast (but only when it’s safe and there are no speed cameras around), dance in the street, if you can’t sing well then just sing anyway, smile at people, open doors for people, pay for someone’s fare somewhere, buy someone flowers. If you want to eat cake, eat it! If you’d rather just bake it and make it look pretty, that’s fine too. When you miss someone, let it happen, let them know and work out if they’re worth finding again. Wear bright colours and stupid hats. Wear inappropriate shoes and make up for no good reason. Do all of these things and more. Do whatever it is that you want to do. Make yourself happy, live yourself happy.

Why the hell not?!



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