It was late into the night, probably two or three in the morning, and I was exhausted. We had gone through so much in the past few hours, and we all knew, with a quiet understanding, that the end would be soon. I sat on a hard plastic chair, giving my back a rest from the weight of my body. I took a look around the hospital ward, nurses were everywhere, the flourescent lights were blinding, and the machines beeped constantly. That’s what I hated the most, and that’s the specific sound that always brings me back to that very night: the constant beeping of a life-support machine, it’s haunting when you realise that when a person is in a coma, those machines are all you have to decipher life from death.
I kept my eye on the machine, taking note of every drop in number, believing that zero would mean goodbye. I kept staring at that machine, the red and green digits indicating oxygen levels and heartbeat. I kept staring until they turned into swirls and stopped making sense.
The numbers fell from the seventies.. to the fifties.. to the twenties, and lingered around nineteen for a while. I kept watching the machine and listening to its evil rhythm, when out of nowhere the numbers hit zero. Every sound in the room was muted, all I could hear was the pounding of my heart against my ribcage. My brain stopped working, I just couldn’t function. I felt paralyzed.
And then the numbers jumped back up, still dangerously low, but at least they weren’t zero.