I was eight years old and neatly tucked into bed, sheet under my chin after my pillow fluffed. Kiss on my cheek and the light dowsed.
I was listening to my heartbeat as I drifted off to sleep.
My heart slowed. Boom. Boom.
And then it stopped.
Children at age 8 have no experience of what to do when your heart stops. So my choices were: 1) allow that heart to stay stopped or 2) to panic.
I leaped out of bed, terrified that I was only a half step from the pearly gates.
What would an 8 year old do with a stopped heart and a panicked brain?
A long drink.
Fortunately, my cure worked.
I checked my heart and it was pounding.
Hard and fast. Boom Boom Boom.
I had dodged the bullet. Escaped the final destination. Side-stepped the end.
I crawled back into bed with relief that I could continue for another day.
Remember this the next time your 8 year old finds monsters under the bed.
Their heart could have stopped, you know.