I knew this was a bad idea. I knew this even before I plunged head first into the icy waters. Why? I can’t swim that’s why, but only I know that. How I wish I’d told someone, then my lungs wouldn’t feel like they were on fire, as they scream for oxygen. My mouth clamped tightly wouldn’t feel like it was being forced open by a hidden self, as my brain tries to over rule my decision to keep it clamped shut.
I force my eyes open, the search for something, anything that may save me, desperate and encumbered by lack of floatation device. They were available at the reception. But I didn’t take one. How could I? I would have been made the laughing stock.
‘Hey look at Steve, six foot five and 350 pounds of pussy.’
Taunts like that have longevity.
Air bubbles the size of marbles hit my face. Then an inner voice tells me to force my hands above my head and let the bubbles lead me to the surface.
My movement is slow but I can see the blurred faces above the water line. If I can just keep the water out of my lungs.
But I’m losing the battle.
My lips part first. I try to keep my teeth together but the muscles around my jaw are weakening. My mouth gapes open and air escapes instantly lost in the bubbles around me. I swallow water. I panic closing my mouth once more but the battle is lost. The water I swallowed is heavy and the buoyancy I had is lost. I look at the outlines of people above me, just out of reach. My mouth opens again as I say farewell to my friends. Blackness envelopes me I can see no more. Silence.
In the moment; Drowning.