With new eyes

Yesterday, I returned from a retreat with the rest of my year 12 peers. I spent three days and two nights with old friends, new friends, complete strangers, and teachers, and now I feel as though I am seeing with new eyes.

Over the course of the retreat, we completed activities and discussions both as a large group of 90, and in randomly selected small groups. We were given the chance to reflect on what we thought about ourselves, what others thought of us, our family life, where we stood on faith, and where we wanted to take ourselves in the future.

In all honesty, before we embarked on the trip, I had a few trepidations. Year 12s from previous years had given me both sides of the argument: some had said it was boring, some said it was the most amazing thing ever. Truth is, each person’s retreat is completely unique to them, and no two experiences are exactly the same. All the same, I had some skepticism.

On arrival, we were divided into dorms we chose ourselves. It’s one thing to have group discussions with complete strangers, and another to sleep with them, so I was lucky enough to share a dorm with some of my best friends, which turned out to be a party of screaming over spiders, awful singing, and going through five bags of chocolates and lollies. Good times.

In my small group however, I had actually never really met any of them before, despite being at school with two of them for nearly 7 years. The three of us had just belonged to completely different worlds and our paths had never crossed. But over the course of the retreat, we, eight of us altogether, got to know some really personal things about one another and I really felt as though we became good friends in such a small amount of time.

In the larger group discussions, I got to know a lot more about the teachers and leaders on the camp as they shared some truly heartbreaking stories about their pasts. Sometimes we forget that teachers are people too with pain and dark places and tragedy in their lives, and this camp really made me see them for who they really were; ordinary people with their own baggage to carry through life. We also were given the opportunity to explore our faith and our opinions on religion and belief. As someone who at this moment in life is unsure of where they stand in terms of faith, I had always felt a bit lost and alone. But this session made me see that there were so many people like me, standing at the crossroads of faith and still undecided on which way to turn. I felt less alone. I was also surprised by the kind of response that the group had and the variety of issues discussed. I hate to label or to impose stereotypes, but usually the “jocks” of my school aren’t really the kinds of people who have much to say about religion, so I was amazed by the amount of them who actually contributed really well and brought some incredibly insightful opinions to the table. Just shows that you can’t judge a book by its cover.

During free time and meal times, we would write little affirmation notes and letters to each other and slipped them into each person’s personalised envelopes. These were then given back to the students to read through, and I was surprised by the amount of affirmations I got. Some of mine were signed and some of them were anonymous, but all of them touched me so deeply. I have often wondered what other people thought of me, and I was amazed at the amount of positivity within each of the notes I received. They really made me feel good about myself, and I did my best to give back what I got, writing to as many people as I could over the course of the retreat.

The part that touched me the most though was the letters we received from our families. I hadn’t known beforehand, but the school had asked our families to write us letters, to be read on the last night of the retreat. I received one from my parents, and one each from my sisters. I sat there, reading in a corner next to one of my best friends, both of us crying silently as we read the beautiful words our families had written for us. I hadn’t know my sisters could write the way we did, and I was just overwhelmed with emotion.

Not all of the camp was completely deep and emotional though, and after the letter writing we spent the rest of the night singing songs and pulling pranks. It just felt so good to be completely free from school commitments and stress for a couple of days and get the opportunity to bond with our peers.

If I were to describe every detail of the retreat in-depth, I’d be here writing for days, but I really just wanted to share a little bit about how this wonderful experience really spoke to me and opened my eyes to the beauty of those around me. It’s been said that nobody except those who have been on a retreat can fully understand it, but I’ll say that how I felt about my experience cannot be expressed in words. If you ever get the opportunity to go on a retreat, be it with work, school, or just friends, I urge you to seize the chance with both hands. It’s an experience like no other and I can guarantee it will change how you see the world.

The gum tree

Gum tree at retreat camp

Sorry for such a long personal post, I just really felt the need to share this.

-Christie 🙂 xx


One Last Adventure

Hey guys, the following is a Fan Fiction that I wrote a while ago for the Doctor Who fandom. The original story can be found on my FanFic site; http://www.fanfiction.net/u/4869282/darksideofthemoon007
Enjoy 🙂 

I lay on my back with my eyes closed, breathing in the smell of disinfectant, listening to the soft beeping of the machines, feeling the weight of the thick blankets on my weak chest. I opened my eyes to the white, moonlit hospital ward that I now called home. My eyes flicked down to the drip in my arm, to the machine monitoring my heartbeat, to the tube in my nose. Once again I was filled with an emptiness that only comes with someone who has lost all hope in living. I knew I didn’t have much longer; a couple of hours, a day or two at the most. The cancer was spreading across both lungs now, constricting my chest and making each breath burn like the inferno of hell itself. I knew I was going to die. I had been denying and ignoring that fact until now, but I could no longer turn a blind eye to my fate and I knew I was going to die. With a pace that was almost excruciatingly slow, I turned my head to face the single, solitary window of my private ward and gazed through the blinds at the full moon. The open window welcomed a light breeze which rustled the blinds, causing their shadows to dance across my face. The moon looked beautiful tonight. My heart wrenched at the thought that this may be the last time I ever saw the moon. A single tear swelled at the corner of my eye and slid down my pale cheek. No fifteen-year-old should ever have to live with the thought that they might never see the moon again. Or the sun. Or the world. I cringed as another flash of burning pain seared across my chest. I let out a choked gasp as it grasped my heart like a vice and squeezed. I writhed and squirmed under the sheets and tried not to cry. After it had disappeared I lay still, my breathing shallow, a cold sweat covering my forehead. These flashes of pain were so normal for me now. They would come to me every hour or so, taunting me, playing with me. I hated them. I wanted them to end. I didn’t want to feel any more pain. Even though I didn’t really believe, I prayed to God that it would all end soon yet, there was so much left I wanted to do, to see, to experience. There were places I’d read about in my many books that I wanted to visit, and there were so many people that I wanted to meet. I didn’t want to go. Oh please make the pain stop. Please…

I must have fallen asleep, for I was awoken by a strange noise. It sounded far away at first, but it was gradually getting closer; a whooshing, warped, scraping noise. Really I couldn’t describe it; I had never heard a noise like it before. I slowly raised my head off my pillows and peered into the dim light of the ward. What I saw before my eyes nearly took my breath away; there was something materializing at the foot of my bed. From what I could make out, it was a large, bulky object that closely resembled a box and was topped with a little white light. Slowly, very slowly, it pulsated and with each whooshing noise, it became more solid, more real. I reached under my sheets and pinched my arm, making sure that I wasn’t dreaming. This was impossible! I thought that there must have been something wrong with my drip and that I was beginning to hallucinate. Maybe this was the end; maybe this is what it’s like to die. I had never read about near-death experiences including seeing a materializing box. Suddenly it was solid, its little white light illuminating the room with a strange glow. From what I could make out, the box was a rich blue in colour and was equipped with double doors, rectangular window panes, a notice its right door, and a St John’s Ambulance seal on the other. Above the illuminated window panes was a sign depicting the words “Police Box”. I was filled with wonder, curiosity, and unease at its presence; the box had a slightly intimidating air about it. For a few minutes it simply sat there, with no indication of there being anything living inside of it. Eventually however, I heard the clicking noise of a door handle unlatching and slowly, the door began to open. My bed was flooded in light as the silhouette of a man stepped out of the box and into my ward. He seemed to be muttering to himself, but I could only make out a few words; “Happened again… really must fix her navigation… wrong year… take her back to Dorium… see if he has any spare parts…” He paused, as though he could feel someone watching him and he turned to face my bed. My heart began to beat faster. This man could be an axe murder for all I knew, but what he did next was not pull out an axe and start hacking me to pieces. Instead, he asked me what year it was. “T-t-two thousand a-and thirteen” I stammered nervously. He began muttering to himself again and when I felt brave enough, I asked the crucial question; “who are you?” He looked at me surprised, as though he had forgotten I was there, but his face broke into a warm smile. He, well, bounced to my bedside and grasped my hand in greeting, “I’m sorry, I should have introduced myself! I’m the Doctor. And who are you?” “I’m Faith,” I replied, returning his handshake with difficulty.

“This is a hospital, isn’t it? What are you doing in here, Faith?” he asked, his green eyes twinkling curiously.

“I’m a terminal patient,” I answered, “I have lung cancer and I don’t have long.”

A look of sadness passed over the Doctor’s thin features and he laid a hand on my dark curly hair. “Oh, I’m sorry,” he said, looking every ounce as though he meant it, “I’m so, so sorry. This must be awful for you. It isn’t fair that someone as young as you should go so soon when I have lived over 900 years.”

He said this with utter sincerity, but I couldn’t help thinking he must be joking. He didn’t look much older than thirty, and it was impossible for someone to live to 900 anyway! I decided to let it go and instead turned my attention to the Police Box.

“What’s that?” I asked, nodding my head at it.

“Oh that!” he said, turning to look at the box with an expression of what I could only call pride, “that’s the TARDIS.” When he saw my look of blank confusion, he chuckled and said, “it stands for Time And Relative Dimensions In Space. Essentially it’s a time machine.” Just when I thought nothing could surprise me… it did. I sat there gaping at the little blue box, twinkling innocently in the corner as I struggled to comprehend what I had just heard. “But… th-that’s impossible!” I managed, turning to stare at the strange man before me. He was obviously delusional. Maybe he was an escaped patient, claiming to be a doctor that travelled through time and space. I had obviously imagined the box materializing in front of me; the noises had merely been him dragging it into my room. As if reading my thoughts of disbelief, he chuckled and said, “I know you don’t believe me, but let me show you something that may change your mind.” He held out a hand to me, his face full of kindness. Before taking it, I looked properly at his face. He was young, and thin, his cheekbones protruded from under his intelligent green eyes. He was tall and wore a tweed jacket with a red bow tie. I grasped his steady hand with one of my own shaking ones and he gently lifted me out of the bed. Dizziness overcame me and I gripped his jacket for support. He lay a reassuring hand on the small of my back as I unclipped my drip and my heart monitor. I looked up into his kind eyes. “You’ll be alright,” he said in response to my unanswered question. My legs felt like jelly; I hadn’t left my bed in weeks and I was not at all steady. The Doctor gently guided me towards the blue box and I touched its smooth, wooden surface. It felt good to touch something that wasn’t cold and metallic for once. The Doctor reached into his jacket pocket and produced a small key which he fitted into the lock on the door of the TARDIS. He turned to look at me, his youthful face filled with glee. “Are you ready?” he asked, barely able to contain his excitement. “I suppose so…” I answered, not completely reassured as to what I was going to see. He pushed open the doors and I stepped inside.

What I was greeted with was not the small, cramped interior of the police box as I had imagined. Instead, the world I entered into was something I would never have imagined in my wildest dreams. Feeling and emotion rushed into my heart, my eyes filled with barely-contained tears of amazement. My breath caught in my throat and I nearly choked. My heart beat faster, and my eyes struggled to take in the impossible sight that lay before me. This box was bigger on the inside.

In front of me was a small flight of stairs leading up to what could only be a control panel, filled with knobs, buttons, levers and wheels. In the middle of the console was a tall tower stretching to the high ceiling that contained what looked like an abstract glass sculpture. Behind and to the sides of the console were stairs leading off to other rooms or possibly corridors and curiously, beside me there stood a hatstand that looked very out of place with its almost alien surroundings. The Doctor leaped up the stairs towards the console and turned to grin smugly at me. “What do you think?” he asked. After a few seconds of my struggling to arrange my thoughts and process the scene before me, I replied, “am I dead? Is this what it’s like to die?” He laughed and took my hand, leading me up the stairs to the console.

“No, dear, you’re not dead. The TARDIS is basically another dimension. It keeps growing and changing; even I haven’t it seen it in its entirety, and I think it would take me an eternity to do so!”

I was still struggling to come to terms with the events that had happened within the last few minutes, but I decided to ask another of the billion questions that had been brewing inside me. “Why does it look like a 50s police telephone box on the outside?”

“Ah, well, the TARDIS used to be able to take on the form of an object that would help it blend in with whatever planet or time we found ourselves in; a chameleon circuit. But one day, certain events took place and the circuit broke. I’ve never been able to fix it, so it’s been stuck on the police box setting.” I nodded distractedly, my eyes still roving all over the room. “So this box can travel anywhere in time and space?” I asked. “Oh yes!” replied the Doctor, “anywhere you want to go, she’ll take you there… well, when she gets it right.”

“Weren’t you saying when you first landed that you were in the wrong year?” The Doctor nodded. “Where were you planning on going?”

“I was planning on visiting this very spot in the year 2213. There was to be the most incredible meteor shower that was going to pass this part of Scotland, and I didn’t want to miss it… I guess I must have forgotten to add an extra two into the year.”

“But you wouldn’t have missed it! You could still go and see it. You do have a time machine, after all.” The Doctor looked at me and it was as if an idea had sparked in his mind, for he stood a little straighter and asked, “would you like to come and see it too?” I stared at him open-mouthed, my heart racing with excitement. He was offering to take me to the future! I couldn’t believe it, it didn’t feel real. Even with the proof of this blue box time machine that was bigger on the inside, I still couldn’t quite believe that he could take me to see a meteor shower in the future. Without really thinking, I nodded and his kind face broke into another delighted smile. “Well, we better get going, we haven’t much time!” I was about to point out that we were in a time machine and that we had all the time in the world, but the flash of pain that rocketed through my chest again made me realise that he hadn’t been referring to the meteor shower. I slowly made my way to the comfy-looking chair that was fixed to the metal railing around the control console and sank into it with a sigh. In all the excitement, I hadn’t realised how exhausted I was. I rubbed my chest in an attempt to numb the throbbing pain that had settled there and watched as the Doctor ran around the console, flicking levers, pressing buttons, and typing on the keyboard. He looked back at me, “you ready?” he asked. I nodded and braced myself on the railing. “Geronimo!” he shouted as he pulled on a lever. The TARDIS gave an almighty lurch and the Doctor slid forward, laughing as he grasped onto the TARDIS console. I broke into a smile, my first smile in months, as I held onto the railing as tight as I could to stop from flying to the other end of the room. The Doctor looked up at the computer screen and, with great difficulty, typed something in and pressed another button. The TARDIS stopped jolting as suddenly as it had started. I was still gripping the railing with white knuckles. My hair was in my face, and I was panting as though I had just run a marathon. The Doctor hurried over to help me up. “Are you alright?” he asked, half-laughing. I looked up at him and grinned. I was exhausted and my chest hurt, but it had been the most fun I had had in a long time. He smiled in return and, taking my hand, led me to the front doors.

The Doctor opened the door and we stepped out. It was a strange sensation. I knew we were still in Scotland, but the scenery had changed.

“Are we still in the same place we left?”

“Yes. This is where the hospital used to be. It’s a national park now! Isn’t that nice?”

I smiled at his enthusiasm but my smile slid from my face. “I’ve been dead for two hundred years,” I said. The Doctor rolled his eyes. “You remind me so much of Amy. She said the exact same thing when I took her to visit the Starship UK. She complained that she’d been dead for centuries.”

I looked at him. “Who’s Amy?” For a moment, I could swear I saw a look of pain flash across his face as I said her name. She must have been someone close to him.

“Amy Pond was the girl who waited.” He said, looking away as he spoke, “I crash-landed in her backyard when she was seven and I had to leave her. I told her I’d only be gone five minutes, but the TARDIS went wibbly and I ended up being twelve years late.” I raised my eyebrows as he continued, “anyway, I came back and she joined me in my travels. Oh that Amy Pond…” a distant look entered his eyes, “such a brave girl…”

“What happened to her?” I whispered. The Doctor looked down at me, his eyes revealing the weight of his sadness. “She was taken from me. I couldn’t save her.” My heart sank and I gulped. “Were there others?” He nodded and sighed, “sometimes things happen, things that I can’t control. Not everyone makes it.” We were silent for a while, gazing up at the clear night sky above us. I had never seen so many stars in my life. Usually the lights from the city would block them out. When you see them in their clusters, the millions and millions of them, the sight is breathtaking. My thoughts turned to the impossible man next to me. It was clear that this man was not human; his technology, intellect, and age told me that much. This man who looked so young, yet was burdened with the soul of someone much older. This man who had lost so much. This lonely man wandering the stars in search of someone to share the universe with.

My thoughts were broken by the Doctor nudging my arm. “Look,” he said, pointing up at the night sky. I gazed up in time to see a single meteor whiz by. As we watched, more and more meteors flew past, dozens and dozens of them. It looked as though every star in the sky was taking flight. I half-expected them to come raining down on top of us as they shot past overhead. The Doctor drew me closer to him as we watched the shower in silence. I couldn’t help it. Tears began to stream from my eyes. It was the most beautiful thing I had ever witnessed, and it was also probably the last thing I would ever see. The Doctor sensed my sadness and squeezed my arm. “Those meteors are traveling through the Earth’s atmosphere at 130,000 miles an hour,” he said. I knew he was just telling me this to distract me, but I appreciated it anyway, “most of them are smaller than a grain of sand and will never even hit the Earth.” He spoke with such enthusiasm and obviously felt proud at being able to tell me these things. Something told me that he hadn’t been able to do that in a while. We sat on the damp grass with our backs against the TARDIS, watching the meteors fly overhead as the Doctor rattled off facts and information on different meteor showers he’d seen. I think he also mentioned something about how he’d caused one as well.

After a few hours, I began to feel tired. It had been a long night, and my condition wasn’t doing me any favors. The Doctor helped me up and half-carried me into the TARDIS, laying me down on the chair. He set the co-ordinates for the hospital and one hectic ride through time later (I still feel ridiculous saying that), we were back at the hospital. It was so odd; I looked at the clock on my bedside table and realised I had only been gone five minutes. The Doctor helped me back into my bed and re-attached the drip into my arm. He sat there for a minute, looking at me thoughtfully. I spoke first to break the silence, “thank you, Doctor.” I said, smiling sadly at him, “as this is probably my last day, I can’t imagine a better way to have spent it.”

He looked sad. “You shouldn’t think like that. This isn’t the end for you, Faith. This is only the beginning. A greater adventure lies ahead of you.”

I looked away from him as tears streamed down my face. “I’m not sure I’m ready to go yet, Doctor. I’m scared of what’s waiting for me… or what isn’t. The fact that I don’t know scares me to death.”

He stroked my hair as I tried to regain my composure, “You are right to fear it, Faith. I don’t blame you, but don’t cling to the fear of what’s to come. Instead, remember your life, all the things you achieved, all the friends you made, all the people whose lives you touched. Keep them in your memory and they will stay with you forever.”

I nodded and took a deep breath. He leaned forward and kissed me once on the cheek. He smiled as he drew back. “You were the best person you could have been, and I am so glad to have met you,” he said. I smiled as he made his way back to the TARDIS. Before he opened the door, he turned to me again. “Goodbye, Faith.” He said. “Goodbye, Doctor,” I whispered as he disappeared into the TARDIS once again.

I lie here now with my eyes closed as the sound of the TARDIS’ whooshing noises fill my ears and the last few breaths of life leave my body. I feel the cold embrace of death encompass me as visions of shooting stars pattern the insides of my eyelids.

I am at peace.



My heart feels light and the sound of drunken singing fills my ears. I know I shouldn’t be driving; it was a wild night and I’ve had a few too many, but I’ve had less than the others. The football game was brilliant. The atmosphere was buzzing and energetic, the fans were even more so. Another chorus of Queen’s We Will Rock You is started up and soon we’re all singing along, laughing and hugging, not a care in the world. I try hard to concentrate on the road, but it’s not easy when Johnny keeps trying to kiss me in a wild drunken frenzy from the passenger seat, or when Angie’s screeching laugh is filling my swimming head. I take my eyes off the dark road for just a second to try and shake Johnny off of me and when I turn back, it’s too late. The truck slams into us at full speed. It’s blinding lights fill my eyes and the sound of crunching metal and screaming rattles my intoxicated brain. My head slams forward and cracks against the windshield, the whole world is rocking and when it comes to a stop, I feel my own warm blood trickling down my face. It hurts to move my head, but I see that my friends are all unmoving. Then the blackness overpowers me.

I awake suddenly, gasping for breath, my head pounding. In my confusion, I leap to my feet and dizziness overwhelms me, forcing me to the ground again. I take a few deep breaths and slowly contemplate my surroundings. Everything is white. The ground is smooth and white, the sky overhead is the exact same shade of white. It’s almost impossible to tell where the horizon ends and the sky begins. I slowly rise to my feet, turning a full circle on the spot. There are objects in the sky that look like suns; six of them. Their light is bright and blinding and hurts my eyes, making my head throb. My heart begins to beat faster and my palms begin to sweat. Where am I? I remember where I was. I had been on the highway… we’d crashed… so where is the car? Where is the road? Where am I? I know I can’t stay here. I have to start walking… in any direction. I need to find someone, anyone who can tell me what the hell is going on and how I ended up here. But which way do I go? I slowly turn again, looking for somewhere to start. I see something dark on the horizon. Was that there before? It looks like buildings… maybe there are people. As I start to walk towards the objects on the horizon, I run a list of possible places I could be; Am I in a coma? Could this be a dream? Am I dead? Is this what it’s like to die? My mind is so occupied that I don’t notice the buildings getting closer. When I finally pull myself together, I find myself at the entrance to what looks like an abandoned city. The buildings look modern, but are covered in dust and grime, as though they have been exposed to the elements without any maintenance. But surely, there can’t be any elements here? There’s nothing else here! I call out into the depths of the city, my voice echoes down the narrow streets. Perhaps there’s a clue in here, something that will tell me who lived here before, and maybe where they are now… I begin my search of the city, walking down alleyways, peering into windows and rattling locked doors. Suddenly, a flash of pain courses though my body; a pain which I had never felt before in my life. It’s fiery hands claw at my chest, bringing me to my knees, tears streaming down my face. I let out a scream that scrapes the insides of my throat, as images of blood and violence and death flash through my mind. As the pain subsides, I look behind me and see it. Hurtling across the flat white plains is a monstrous mass of black smoke and vapor, constantly shaping and changing. And it’s heading straight for me. My heart racing, I turn and sprint as fast as I can into the depths of the city. I fly around corners and scamper through alleyways, desperately trying to put as much distance between me and that- that thing as I can. I see a fire escape ladder ahead of me, leap to grab it, and pull myself up. I flatten myself against the edge of the building’s rooftop as the smoke-monster passes by below me. I can see it better from here now. Different shapes are born from its surface; skulls, snakes, spiders, giant moths… it’s horrible. Sweat pours from my forehead and down my face as I struggle to catch my breath and try not to cry. What was it? Why did it want me? I figure that the rooftops are the safest place to be at the moment, so I make my way across them. The gaps between the buildings are rather wide, but for some reason I can clear them easily.

I wander the rooftops aimlessly for a while, unsure of what to do next. I could stay up here and risk starving to death, or I can risk being caught up to by the smoke-monster. My decision is made for me when the pounding returns to my head again and a piercing ringing fills my ears. This time, images of needles, machines, and people in masks fill my head as I struggle to recalibrate my senses. Across the rooftops in the distance, the smoke-monster is careering towards me at a tremendous speed. In my panic, I run to the edge of the rooftop and leap for my life. I hit the ground hard, but I am unhurt. I take off out of the city and across the white plains. I feel the smoke-monster’s presence behind me. It’s cold and robs the air from my lungs, drinking in my fear, my hate, my worry, my longing. My legs are getting tired, and lack of oxygen is making me light headed, but I can’t stop. I mustn’t stop. I will not let that thing get me. I will not give in.

“I will not give in!” I scream at it as I hurtle across the never-ending plains. I can still feel it behind me, so close to me, yet never within reach. Ahead of me, I see something. The whiteness of the horizon does not look so far away anymore. It looks solid… like a wall. I see the outline of a door through my dizziness and pounding head and I stagger towards it. I dare not slow down, lest the thing behind me catches up. I reach for the handle and turn.

I burst through the door, slamming it shut behind me. I look down to see a few black, smoky tendrils, feebly licking around my ankles, displeased that its prey had outrun it. I turn away from the door. I know I won’t need to worry about the monster anymore. The sight that reaches my eyes when I turn around takes me by surprise. I find myself in a clean, white room. An assortment of machines stand in a circular pattern around a table. The table is surrounded by doctors in white masks and wearing blue scrubs. On the table is a body…

My body.

I stare down in blind shock at my lifeless figure lying on the operating table. The doctors take no notice of me whatsoever as they rush around, injecting things into my body, removing things, sewing things, pumping things. I snap my fingers in one of their faces. No response. I realise that I must be invisible. Or a ghost. But I’m not dead. One of the monitors is showing my heart rate. It’s dangerously shallow. I realise now where I am… or where I was. I was in limbo. I’m not quite alive, but I’m not quite dead. Running forever from the fate that was soon to catch up with me. Now I have a choice. I could simply walk away; go back through the door and face what’s waiting for me on the other side. Or I could keep fighting. I’ve come this far… why should I give in now? I close my eyes and breathe out slowly.

Sound rushes into my ears as I gasp for breath. I hear the impatient beeping of the machines. I hear the doctors crying in relief as I take my first breath again.

“She’s okay!”

“She’s alive!”

“Someone check her responses!”

One doctor shines a light in my eyes as another clicks their fingers next to my ears.

“Responses normal. She’s good.”

Once again I close my eyes and let the blackness swallow me. When I awake, I find myself in a warm bed with soft pillows. The nightstand next to me is cluttered with flowers, cards, and chocolates. I smile to myself. I know I will die one day… but today is not that day.