Monday, October 22, 2007

As the Day Begins

You never know where the day will take you.

I teach with another teacher four periods a day and we share a big double-sized classroom. We also each teach a class alone. His single class is first period.

So I walk into our classroom during his first period, smile (or scowl--it IS 7:45 AM) at his students--many of whom I know well. My colleague is instructing his students to start an assignment while they wait for the bell to ring.

So, I sit at my computer and log on, when I hear a girl sobbing hysterically. I turn around, and this girl has her hands over her face and, as I said, is sobbing. A couple of students get up to comfort her, but she says nothing and just keeps sobbing. My colleague walks over and starts patting her on the back and tells her it's ok, but gives me a look that shows he has no idea what's going on either.

And she keeps sobbing. Usually, you can expect high school girls to begin crying like this at a moment's notice, but they usually calm down. This poor girl was heaving and sobbing and clearly unable to talk.

We both realize that she's not crying but is having problems breathing. So, I quietly tell my colleague that I'm going to call the school nurse and I do so.

The nurse walks in, very calmly, and goes to the girl. She knew who this girl was when I gave her our room number and begins telling her in a calm voice "It's ok Christy. Breath. Just breath."

The girl starts breathing and gasping and soon sobs "My body hurts! My body hurts!"

The bell rings and I shepherd the students out. I tell my colleague that I'm going to keep the students outside, thinking at the time that the girl will be alright once the crowd leaves.

So the class and I sit over at the lunch tables and wait. By the way, it's very windy outside, so dust is blowing everywhere.

Soon administrators come. Then the girls mother comes. Then the paramedics come.


I take the students to the library to get out of the wind and because I don't know what's happening or how long it will take.

Meanwhile, my colleague is in there with the girl, the nurse, the girl's mother, and several administrators. Tells me later how the girl went into seizure five times and actually turned blue. All the while, the nurse gently reminded the girl to breath.

The paramedics took her to the hospital and I don't know how she is but I haven't heard from my colleague or anyone else, so I hope that's a good sign.

But what a day.

1 comment:

Donita Smith said...

Oh my god, Jeff. That must have been pretty scary for everyone. I hope she's ok.

It makes me wonder. If the nurse knew who she was then this is something that must have happened before. At least it's something the nurse knew about. So why don't all of her teachers know about it? She could have gotten help much quicker if you guys had known that she was in serious distress. Someone dropped the ball here.

I could rant some more but maybe there's more to the story. I just think it's too bad everyone had to go through that experience when it maybe could have been handled another way.

Any word about her today?