Monday March 3rd, 2014

The exercise:

Write about: panic.

Mondays are so long. I need to get this written before I fall asleep on the couch yet again.


Air too thick to breathe, blood cells too loud and too heavy for the veins struggling to contain them. An invisible hand around my throat, gradually tightening. No escape, no end in sight. I am drowning on my living room floor with not a drop of water to be found.

It's not real. None of this is real. This fear cannot kill me. I have to remember that. Cling to that thought. Do not let go, no matter what.

Another wave, this one more suffocating than the last. Rational thoughts twist and tumble, collide like seeds trapped inside a maraca. Panic takes hold once more. Run. Doesn't matter where, just run. Whatever direction I'm facing, run.

No. Calm down. Calm is the mortal enemy of panic. Breathe. Don't give up. Fight like your life is on the line.

Because it is.

Hold on, here it comes again...


Greg said...

Well, if that's what you write when you're tired and about to fall asleep, I think the rest of us can retire our quills now and just let you get on with the story-telling! Very evocative and emotive, nicely capturing (what I think it would be like to have ) a panic attack. The third paragraph in particular is great with the reference to the maraca :)

She looked around the panic room. It was spacious and nicely laid out: there was a sofa in there, a bit chintzy for her tastes, but she and her mother had never seen eye-to-eye on furnishings and decor. Two armchairs, set off from the sofa at a proper angle; clearly the Feng Sui expert had been allowed in here at some point. Flowers in a vase... she walked over to check. Yes, fabric, linen maybe. So that they'd last and not rot because you wouldn't know how long you'd be in here for. A television -- obviously -- with... oh yes, cable controls. Probably a buried cable line as well, so that intruders couldn't cut it off without a lot of work and luck.
The coffee table had some thick magazines on it, and there was a bookcase with all the volumes that she knew her mother aspired to one day read. Definitely thinking ahead.
The corpse on the Persian rug... well, at least it hadn't leaked yet. No spoilage.
She sighed. It was ridiculous that this was how it had ended, but the one thing she could be absolutely certain of was that her mother, a woman paranoid enough to build a panic room and daft enough to furnish it for living in a for a month, was also so claustrophobic that being shut in here for the minimum two hours had been enough to induce a fatal panic attack.

MosesMalone said...

From the dead of her sleep, she jumped up and started running to the kids room. The blankets were still on her. The dog started barking. She rushed into the room looking from bed to bed. She hasn't breathed yet, and she feels like she is going to pass out. She goes straight for the youngest. She puts her ear near her to listen for breath. Slowly, slowly, small girl breathes. Not that one. She goes to check the boy, but he rolls over before she checks his breathing. The oldest. She waits for her to breath. Still waiting. Oh God! Tears pool in her eyes.... No!!! And then the girl takes a slow sleepy breath. The mom breathes, quietly walks out of the room, remakes the bed, and climbed in. She wipes the left over panic tears from under her eyes. She prays. She thanks God again for them.

I call this little story Another Tuesday.

Marc said...

Greg - thanks!

Great description of the room. You had me wondering where you were going with this one and the ending did not disappoint :)

Mo - yeah, I've only got one to check on in the middle of the night, but that's more than enough for me to relate to this one. You captured the emotions very well here.