Dying in the night

I wish to apologise. I have been busy writing the essential novel. This means I haven’t kept up with everybody’s posts. But I still selfishly want you to keep up with mine. So I have dredged the depths and am reposting the following. If you have seen it before then I rejoice in the knowledge that we have been friends for a long time. If you haven’t seen it before then ‘welcome to my world’. 

There is reality in dreams that you will never find in the made up world of facts.

During the night he had woken and, as he lay looking at the black ceiling he could hear the sound of blood coursing through his heart. He felt the thump as the valves closed, opened, and then closed again. ka-thump – ka-thump -ka-thump. For the next hour he lay with the sheets dampening with the perspiration of his body and the terrible fear that his heart was wrong.

But in the morning he heard the alarm on the old Nokia cell phone and realised that he had slept well since that terrible time of dying. He dressed, made coffee and went to work.

His classes were the same as they had been for an eternity and he explained the concept of quadratic equations with the same senseless examples that he knew off by heart.

But I think it was my heart that woke me, Doc –

-Were you sitting up at the time? –

-Well No. Not really. I pulled a pillow under my head and maybe I was a bit scrunched over. But more lying down than sitting up.-

-There’s nothing the matter with your heart. All the valves are clear, your blood pressure is perfect for someone your age.-

-Yes but is it perfect enough for me to maybe die in my sleep tonight?-

The doctor laughed that tiny little laugh that said, ‘you might drop dead before you walk out the door.’

A hand shot up from the front of the class. He sat at the front of the class because his parents told him he was a very clever boy and should ask questions because that is how you learn but the facts were that the boy was stupid and thought he was clever, because his parents said he was clever, and he didn’t listen because he didn’t need to and then he asked a question that had been answered ten times already.

There was an audible groan from the class.

“But Sir, You can’t have the square root of three because there isn’t any number that it could be. It’s just absurd.”

“You’re right. It is actually a surd not an absurd. We went through that all yesterday.”

“Yes. I was just testing.”

He woke up again the next night and the pain was there again and the sound of the blood. He looked at his clock and the time was exactly the same as the night before. He had been dreaming about mathematical equations and he had forgotten how to explain why 1/8th plus 3/8th was equal to a half. He knew it had something to do with drawing a pizza on the board and cutting up the pieces, but in his dream it worked out differently each time. So he took the class down the street on a bus and they all bought pizzas and when they got back to school all the doors were locked and there were parents in angry little cars waiting for them and he couldn’t explain that it was a legitimate school excursion even if no one had signed any permission slips.

In the morning he woke up and went to work. He was nervous about something that worried him but he wasn’t sure what it was. Then a message came through from the office that the Principal wanted to see him and someone would come into his class to relieve him.

The Principal stood up from behind his desk and shook his hand.

“I understand there was a problem yesterday!”

“Yes but it was a lot easier to explain with pizzas and that’s why we went down the street. I thought we’d be back in plenty of time but my watch broke and I’m sorry we missed the bus. I hope the parents weren’t too angry.”

“I’m not sure what that’s all about. No, I mean that problem with the young O’Meara lad crying and running out of class. I think you need to know his father died the night before. He’d been quite unwell for a while but it was very sudden. I believe that one of your mathematical equations was explained as being “Drop Dead Easy” and that didn’t help things for the lad.”

-But how easy is it to just drop dead, Doc?-

-I don’t think anyone knows. Everyone who has isn’t able to say how easy it was.-

-Yes, but can’t you give me a bit of an idea?

-How long is it before the end of term? I want to put you in hospital for about a week or so until we sort things out. –

-You think I’m going crazy don’t you Doc?-

-No, I don’t. But you do need a bit of help to get back into shape.

A week before the end of term his heart did stop. In the middle of the night. Around about the time it had happened before. But he didn’t know that.

9 thoughts on “Dying in the night

  1. I’m glad to know that other teachers dream about the day ahead. I think you would have found quite a lot of our staff awake at three and four in the morning (and I was one of them).

    Liked by 3 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s