Friday, February 5, 2010

Deathbed #fridayflash

She was dying and there was nothing I could do. All of the experts agreed. What had started as just a mild problem quickly became the end of the road. And here, in the moments before her death, I was unsure how we had gotten here so quickly. How could I continue without her, my most reliable companion? I was supposed to help her, support her, and I had failed utterly.

"I'm not sure what I'm going to do without you," I told her. She didn't respond--couldn't respond, really. I didn't expect anything out of her now but the last few gasps and then the end of the wheezing sound she had taken the past three days. This was a horrible way to go.

The best thing to do, everyone said, was to pull the plug and let her go quickly. I had been putting it off, prolonging her suffering, trying to steal every moment before she was gone. But she was completely unresponsive. There would be no happy ending in the 11th hour. All that was left was to make it official.

"I'm sorry," I said. It felt cold, knowing that I was going to make the decision that was going to cause it all to end. I wasn't sure whether to feel compassion or crushing guilt. There had been so much promise, but now ... now it was gone.

When I had finally done it, pulled the plug and saw her die, I walked out of the room. My friend was there, waiting for me. When he saw the look on my face, he shook his head, trying to be sympathetic. But he didn't understand. Who could?

"I'm sorry. I know how much she meant to you. But don't worry, we'll get you set up with something new as soon as you're ready."

"How could you talk about replacing her at a time like this?" I said, collapsing numbly into the chair.

"Can't go through life with no computer. Come on, get up and we'll find a new one. You'll feel right as rain. It's like ... like a pet. The best way to get over one is to get another."

"That's horrible."

"It might be turbulent, but it gives you something to focus your energy on. Don't grieve, nurture."

"If you say so. I miss her."

"I understand. But you'll move on, to new experiences with a new companion. C'mon, let's go shopping."

Together we left, the dead left behind, soon to be replaced by the working. Such was the cycle of life.

6 comments:

Marisa Birns said...

Oh this is something I fear for Tommy, my laptop! He is rather old but still...

Very clever piece and last lines are so true!

Carrie said...

Heehee! Glad to have you again Matt! I like the twist in this story because I was wondering what kind of ass would be so insensitive. Great story!

Dana said...

It's funny -- despite being a nerdy programmer type I don't get sentimental about my computers. I've never got the folks who give them names and such.

I guess what I'm saying is that I'd be his insensitive jerk friend :P

CJ Hodges MacFarlane said...

Heh, nice twist - I've felt that way about cars, but computers still feel a little cold to me.

Cathy Olliffe said...

I guess I'm a computer-tart. This one is still practically brand new and already I'm salivating at thoughts of a new laptop.
If I thought my credit card would take it, I'd go now.
Good stuff!

オテモヤン said...
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