A Book To Fall For

, , , , , | Right | October 1, 2018

(A middle-aged lady comes in to pick up a book she placed on hold, and starts browsing around a bit in the kid’s book section before checking out. A few minutes later, I glance towards the back of the store and see an arm on the ground. Running over, I see her flat on her back. She doesn’t appear to be breathing, and her eyes are open but not moving, even when I wave my hand in front of her face.)

Me: *hoping to God she’s not dead and trying to remember the CPR I learned in high school* “Ma’am, are you all right? Ma’am?”

(No response, not even a twitch, and now I’m almost positive she’s just dropped dead. I run to the nearest employee, not wanting to shout and panic the children in the store, and tell my colleague to call 911 before running back to the lady. I have no emergency medical training, and the most I can figure to do is try checking her pulse and starting hands-only CPR, which I know can break ribs, so I’m trying to gear up mentally for that. Luckily, by the time I get back to her, she’s blinking and looking around. Whew.)

Me: “Ma’am? How are you feeling?”

Lady: “Just a little dizzy.”

(She’s speaking very slowly, and seems confused and out of it.)

Me: “Are you all right? I think you just passed out.”

Lady: “No, I just got a little dizzy and fell down.”

Me: “Well, we’ve called 911, and there are EMTs on their way to check you out, just in case.”

Lady: “Oh, no… Please don’t call 911. I’m fine; I just got a little dizzy.”

Me: “You took a bit of a spill, and I’m not comfortable letting you leave without making sure you’re all right.”

Lady: “But I don’t need to go to the hospital.”

(We go back and forth, with her insisting she’s fine, even though she sounds concussed at minimum, and me insisting that they’re already on their way and she needs to be checked out. The whole time I want to shout at her, “Lady, I thought you were DEAD! You are talking to a medical professional come Hell or high water, if only so I can sleep tonight without worrying about you REALLY dropping dead in an hour from an aneurysm or something!”)

Me: *getting firm with her* “I’m sorry, but you need to be checked out by the EMTs. In the meantime, you stay lying down here and rest. Do you need anything? Can I get you some water or a pillow?”

Lady: *looking resigned and still pretty out of it* “No, I’m okay.”

(Desperate for something to do to take my mind off of this drama while waiting for the ambulance, I decide to at least tidy the area around her so I can keep my hands busy and keep an eye on her just in case. I bend over and pick up the book she dropped on the ground when she went down.)

Lady: “Oh, I still want the book!”

(Absolutely stunned, I set the book back on the ground next to her. The ambulance arrived a couple of minutes later, and when the EMTs helped her stand up to check her out, she passed out cold again. They ended up rolling her out of the store on a gurney and taking her to the hospital. But here’s the real kicker: a couple of hours later, after she’d been discharged, she came back in and BOUGHT THAT D*** “FINDING DORY” BOOK. Gotta admire the determination.)

1 Thumbs
551
VOTES