Passing Out as a Party Trick
My "syncope" (fainting), is a byproduct of anxiety. The way my body copes with panic is basically to shut down and reboot. While this coping mechanism may be a little vaca for my physical self, it reeks havoc mentally; leaving me emotionally drained, afraid and occasionally embarrassed. Here are some fun times with fainting!
- •On the examining tableAbout to give blood for a routine checkup, I sit in a paper robe at the far end of the table, feet dangling. I remember feeling nauseous. Was it the creepy clamp tool in the left corner? (I was at the gyno.) Was I famished? (At the time I considered visible sternums to be sexy.) Regardless, the nurse took what seemed like an enormous amount of blood and left the room. Flash forward to me coming to; on the cold floor, robe undone, draped in a metal object that had fallen across my neck.
- •In the showerAhhhhh the morning shower. Singing late 90's post grunge heartbreak songs into the removable shower nozzle as I scrub Noxema on my t-zone. Is the water too hot? Am I freaking out about what I'm going to wear to prom? I feel the 4 walls close in on me in this tiny stand-up shower? Surprise! I wake up on the floor, shower stall wide open, nozzle by my feet. Total state of shock as water flows onto the tiled bathroom floor.
- •On the subwayIt's early September and fucking hot on my morning commute. I'm questioning my outfit; a blue dress that may be too short post summer. We are packed in sweating like anchovies in a tin-can. I know the feeling by now so i have time to sit, squeezing myself awkwardly between passengers . A freezing sweat that I can't control. My thoughts spin, collide and burst until there is nothing left. Nothing but my empty head on the shoulder of the woman to my left shaking me and asking if I'm alright
- •In the oceanI didn't even know that clamming was a thing. (I'm Jewish.) How did I get here? Me in a bikini holding a pitchfork ala American Gothic. Him explaining that I should always hold the rake away as I drag because it's very sharp. I pull it towards me and feel intense pain. I lift my foot. My big toenail is pulled up vertically and drenched in blood. Down and out I go. Over his shoulder he carries me to shore. I come to on dune with a man who would later tell me he loves me for the first time.