September 21 2018
In and Out
I was ready. My hair was up, I had my sneakers and athletic shorts on. It was a great day for running. The air was crisp, the sky partially cloudy. My siblings were training for the Broad Street Run and I decided to go with them to cheer them on. We started to run at the same rate. We started off pretty fast. After a couple of minutes, I saw that they were in front of me and that it was getting harder and harder to run. I then moved to a jog. Then to a walk. Soon to a stop. They started laughing at me as I gasp for air.
I woke up one morning much later with the same feeling. My chest was tight, my breathing unsteady. My mom came into my room to check on me because I was late for breakfast. I couldn’t get out of bed.
“Noor? Are you ok?” She asked as she walked into my room and saw me with my hand on my chest. I was checking that I was still breathing. I looked around my room to see if anything else felt unfamiliar or weird, or if it was just me. I felt as though I had to manually contract and expand my lungs. I had to tell myself In and out, in and out. My breathing was no longer natural.
“I can’t breathe,” I told her as tears dripped down my face. My eyebrows were scrunched up together and my big brown eyes were filled with tears.
We decided to go to the doctor's office.
“Alicia-Noor Kreidie? To room three please.”
They sent me into a room where I have never been before. It was small, with white walls which hung drawings made by little kids. There was a strong smell of hand sanitizer that burned my nostrils whenever I took a breathe. On one side of the room were a couple chairs and an exam table. On the other side were shelves which held cotton balls, tongue depressors, hand sanitizer and a poster that asked if you had had all your updated vaccines. I still had to tell myself in and out, in and out.
Within a couple minutes a petite doctor with dark brown hair came in to check on me. Her named tag read Doctor Kelly. She started off with asking what was wrong. I told her that I felt like I was gasping for air and that my chest was tight.
“One big inhale and exhale.” the doctor said, as she put the cold stethoscope on my chest. She listened to my lungs,I thought that she was going to hear my breathing maybe twice or three times, but instead she checked my breathing eight times. She listened from my chest, my back and my side.
“Well, your left lung sounds very weak,” said Doctor Kelly. That was something that I absolutely did not want to hear. A weak lung? I thought to myself, what could have caused this and why now why on a beautiful sunny day? I’m never going to get better and I'm going to have to go to the hospital. I was getting riled up by my inner thoughts. Just breathe, I kept on trying to tell myself just breathe, in and out, in and out.
“We are going to do a breathing treatment, see how you feel after that and then go from there, ”she said in a calm tone.
That news made me feel even worse. I wanted to feel better after a twenty-minute nebulizer breathing treatment, but I felt the same. I was sent home with a new perception for a steroid and told to rest. A few hours later I was being examined by another doctor at CHOP’s emergency room. More breathing tests, more examinations, an x-ray, and an EKG before I was finally released. I was exhausted when I arrived home after midnight, and even more exhausted since I had to wake up every four hours to take a treatment.
I took me four days to feel like I was breathing normally. I never want to experience that ever again. Asthma has affected my life in many ways, I never played any team sports, and I was always homesick when the season changed. I know that It's like this for many kids, but it's not going to hold me back from living a joyful life. I am going to go back to Kelly Drive to run more than a couple hundred yards, and see who’s laughing now.