Flat Line

by Ashmi Shah

“And we have a pulse.” The doctor announces. The ECG machine has started it’s rhythmic beeping once again. Tears of relief are streaming down my cheeks as I watch the zigzag patterns of my husband’s heartbeat reappear. I mutter a silent prayer.

My hand is pressed against the glass door of the hospital room. I am staring blankly at the love of my life, his body- bandaged and bruised. I have been waiting for hours, he has not gained consciousness yet. The doctors are not saying anything to me.

I am feeling so fatigued, every muscle in my body is screaming at me to rest but I cannot stop watching him and praying for his recovery. My eyes are puffy from all the crying. The guilt is consuming me. After all, I was the one behind the wheel that night driving rashly to make our 8pm valentine day dinner reservation. I finally retire to the waiting room to get some rest.

“We have a code blue!” A shrill nurse interrupts my thoughts. I see a plethora of doctors rushing in the direction of my husband’s room.

The pit in my stomach deepens as I start to imagine the worst. I rush behind them desperately praying it’s not my husband. And then I hear it, that dreadful monotone of the ECG machine sucking a life away.

I am frozen in utter shock as I gawk at the battered body which is lying still on the hospital bed. Looks like my prayers have been answered, he isn’t the one who died in the accident.

“Time of death, 5:45AM.” I hear the doctor declare before he covers my face with a white sheet.

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