In One Second

In one second,

A life can be made, or broken.

In one second,

A glance can be given, or stolen.

In one second,

A dream can be fulfilled, or dashed.

In one second,

A heart can be put to rest.


Made a hospital visit after work today. A student’s father had fallen into a coma, and was admitted in the intensive care unit. When we spoke to him, told him we are teachers from his daughter’s school, that we will take care of her as he recovers, tears oozed out from the corners of his eyes. “He can hear us.” The girl said. She didn’t cry; maybe she had cried enough. Or maybe she doesn’t know what her mother doesn’t want her to know. When she left the room, her mother broke down. Walls of emotion crumbled as she told us how she did not know how to break the news to her 3 children – that their father will need to be taken off life support soon – and whether he survives after that is up to him alone [I admit, my eyes weren’t totally dry at this point].

Somehow, when you see a man that big and strong, lying on a bed like that, reduced to what looks like nothing but a crumpled mass of blankets, it hits you – life is fleeting.

Suddenly, all the things he did – calling teachers to scold them for asking students to buy extra files, refusing to sign financial forms because he did not see the need for excursions to the zoo, complaining that rehearsals for the school’s cultural night were too long – didn’t seem important anymore. Everyone just wanted him to be well.

We spoke to the other family members outside the ward for awhile more before leaving. There was a sense of forced normality in the air. She had brought her homework. We encouraged her to keep coming to school, which she promised to do. But at the back of everyone’s mind, we knew – things could change, in one second.

Life is fleeting, indeed.

One thought on “In One Second”

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