Someone is touching me… holding my hand. I try to open my eyes but one is covered with something. What happened to me? My face and neck and side hurt, like a searing pain that won't go away. The one eye that I can see out of, I look to see who is holding my hand. It's Heather. She has her head down on the bed like she's crying. I tighten my grip on her hand and she looks up, her eyes red. I attempt at a smile, but the left side of my face feels raw, almost tight. She tells me what happened. I just listen to her talk and don’t take my eyes off her for a second. I'm relieved to hear that I got Ashlynn in time. Heather scoots closer to me and lays her head on the bed again. She's still holding my hand.
Heather explained to me that I got severe second degree burns on the left side of my back, ribs, neck and part of my face, from falling onto that flaming coffee table. They were able to get the piece of glass out and bandage it. She told me I was a hero for saving my sister.
My entire body feels numb with extreme pain. The doctor comes in to take the bandage cloth off my face. Heather sits there and waits until he leaves. I can see with both my eyes now and wonder what my face looks like. I lay there and feel a tear run down my scarred face. Heather grabs my hand again and looks right into my eyes. She smiles and whispers, barely audible: "I love you".
You don’t know what you have until you lose it. And I almost lost Michael. I'm sitting next to his hospital bed and holding his hand. His face is scarred and scorched from the fire, along with his neck, ribs, and back. He has a cloth bandage thing over his face and right now he's asleep. I have my head down so he doesn’t see me crying when he wakes up. I’ve never cried in front of a guy before. Not even Casey. I feel him tighten his grip on my hand and I look up. I probably look like a mess. He tries to smile but couldn’t. I couldn’t even smile. I explain to him that he got second degree burns and that they were able to get the piece of glass out. He looks relieved that he got Ashlynn out in time. I tell him that the doctors and I said he was a hero for saving Ashlynn. I scoot closer to him and lay my head on the bed and close my eyes, still holding his hand. The warm feeling from his big hands makes me feel at home.
The doctor comes in to take off the cloth on his face. His face is scarred, red, and blotchy. Right there, I realized I love him. No matter what happened or happens to him, I'm there. The doctor left and I'm standing here, looking at Michael. He looks lost in the hospital bed. This isn’t where he belongs. He starts to cry. I come up to him, hold his hand and say, "I love you".