ben vandgrift · on living the dream

we all die in pain

we all die in pain. the last few seconds are hard, when you can just barely hear the heartbeat monitor through the rushing in your ears, you can taste blood, and the vision of whatever place you're seeing in your head fades to black. the pain is so intense that you forget to tell your heart to keep beating, and its all over.

it's a little cold.

i didn't see my life flash before my eyes, but saw the most horrible vision i can imagine. i'll share it with you, so you can take it with you to your grave. it was a dead woman's innards being pulled out through the birth canal. i know it was the birth canal, because the first thing to come out was a dead child. she'd been pregnant when she died, and apparently the strongest link in the woman's body was the umbilical cord tying her insides to her baby. when the tiny corpse came out, so did everything else in a wretched string of fetid meat.

i died from a bullet wound. one of three, but i know which one killed me. i could feel them working on it, a kind of pressure in that thigh. one in each leg, just below the pelvis, one in the lower back. the good news is that lead-jacketed death had to travel through the back of the truck to get to me, so they didn't go in too deep. the bad news? the doctor digging out #2 hit the femoral artery when he did so, and i was so close .. already counting my heartbeats .. that the sudden blood loss did me in.

written: Jul 17 2004