Beep…Beep…Beep… By Terveen Gill

I’m all alone.

Day – night seem the same. I’m always engulfed by a sharp, white light.

I still haven’t warmed up to this hospital bed.

Home is a distant memory. One I dream about with my eyes open and closed. It seems cheerier than I knew it to be. Maybe time has blurred the sadness. Perhaps my present is bleaker.

I’ve not breathed on my own in days. It could be weeks before I can. Or I just might not survive this. Hence, no breathing required.

The nurses, their kind faces, drift in and out like a haze. They check my vitals, note down readings, ensure the tubes are in place. A needly prick here and there, reassuring pats, supportive words.

It could be my imagination, but it often feels like I’m not here.

The doctors come and go, adjusting and readjusting my medicines. Their latex fingers upon my face, shining light into my eyes. Don’t they know I’m already enlightened?

Sickness is the greatest revealer. It pierces the heart and mind, eliminating all sorts of misconceptions and bias. What remains is raw and tender, a painful reminder of life’s delicate nature.

They often whisper. Don’t they know I can hear them? No family, no friends, no sympathetic visitor.

I want to laugh. But this tube in my mouth makes it difficult.

Friendship and love are frivolous, often destroyed by abundant greed and jealousy. A loyal enemy is a much more prized entity.

My bed sores are my real companions. They speak to me. I listen to their muddled words. We argue and fight, but always make up. They express my reality. I forgive the hurt they give me.


The sound of life is so lifeless. So monotonous.

But then there’s nothing exciting about being in a coma.

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21 comentarios sobre “Beep…Beep…Beep… By Terveen Gill

    1. That’s the saddest part about life and its significance. We often have to suffer to realize the better side of it. Losing and gaining, knowing and accepting, the ups and downs that we must bear. You’re right, Bob, many never understand even when it’s too late. Thanks so much for the enlightening words. 🙂

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  1. Ram Dass used to talk about how much grace his stroke brought him, so I guess it is possible to gain some enlightenment from a sickness. But I liked reading it metaphorically. Hard not to when you have great lines like «I’ve not breathed on my own in days.» Or «…it often feels like I’m not here.» Or this little gem, «The sound of life is so lifeless. So monotonous.» I think it’s a beautiful little story and maybe we’re all in our own little comas trying to wake up.

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    1. Only you can portray the bluntness of existence in such a creative way, Tony. ‘Our own little comas’ – that’s something I could sit and think about for hours. Maybe that’s a little coma in itself. And though many may disagree, the rise after the fall is often much more triumphant and memorable. It’s about losing, accepting, gaining, and realizing. Maybe not everyone’s cup of tea but fortunate are those who finally think on those lines. Thanks a bunch and I hope you’re well. 🙂

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    1. You are so right, Shobana. Health is the most prized commodity. But one must lose it to realize this or else it’s taken for granted like the many other essential but overlooked parts of life. I wish you well always and may you always be in the best of health. 🙂

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  2. Oh, this write reminded me of the days leading me up to my dads death. The last time I saw him in the hospital, I realized that consciousness was going to leave forever, and there was this sense of peace in knowing that this consciousness was me, and that we’d still be one forever. What a wonderful write. Thank you for providing this space for my reflection, Terveen. ☺️

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    1. Thank you so much, Jeff, for sharing this personal memory with me. Losing a parent is very tough, and at times, it takes a lifetime to come to terms with it. Some never do. The way you describe the concept of consciousness here is so touching and brilliant. Yes, there’s so much more to bonds than meets the eye. They live on forever. I believe that too. Your words always make me smile and contemplate life with a newer perspective. Thank you again for that. 🙂

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  3. I have experienced my husband, unresponsive and dying, hearing what was said to him. His vital signs were failing, but when we told him that his parents and children were on their way, the vital signs recovered until after their visit.

    I think if more people realized that their loved one in a coma could hear them, they would visit more regularly. Thank you for this sensitive and empathetic portrayal! 🙂

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    1. Thank you, Cheryl, for sharing your memories here. It must have been painful to see your husband in such a helpless state. We always hope to see our loved ones as strong, independent, and self-reliant individuals. Such a transition can be so devastating. I’m glad that you continued to communicate with him. I hope it gave you and him some much needed comfort. Stay strong and thank you for this. 🙂

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  4. Very well done. Thank you for sharing. (And writing). An old friend of mine just spent 3-4 weeks in a COVID induced coma. Nobody knows why. Then his wife sneaked in his room past the barrage of nurses and doctors whispered to his ear. He heard her, and woke up 2 days later. He’s good now. 🙏🏻

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    1. Now that’s a remarkable story. We hardly know the reasons for so many incidents (good or bad), but the belief that something can be different or unexpected must never be doused by mundane conformity. Thank you so much for sharing this. I wish you well. 🙂

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