Hitomi, our Japanese exchange student, passed out on the kitchen floor last night. My husband had gone to bed and I was on my way. But first, I took one more stroll through the house like I usually do making sure doors were locked, that Parker, my 14 year-old-son, was headed to bed, lights were out, etc… When I reached the kitchen, Hito was lying on the floor. At first, I thought she was pulling a joke on me. But when I couldn’t wake her, I became frightened. I yelled for my husband, Pat. He called 911.
As we waited for the ET’s to arrive, Hito began opening her eyes but I could tell no one was home. It appeared that she couldn’t see, hear, or speak. I held her in my arms. When she wanted to drift off to sleep, I gently shook her and spoke in a loud voice, “Hito! Look at mom.” I don’t know why I did that. It was either instinct or too much television. Either way, I felt better when her eyes were open.
I thought the ambulance would never arrive. Once they did arrive, they did a quick check of her vials, asked us a few questions, and then strapped her to a board and loaded Hito into the ambulance. Pat rode with her to the hospital. I thought it was best if I followed behind in the car. I wanted to put my bra on and change my PJ’s to jeans and a sweatshirt. (the girls must be contained in public)
Earlier that evening, Hito had walked on the treadmill for 2 hrs, and then took a long hot, steamy bath. When we arrived at the hospital, the doctor explained what happened.
“When a person exercises, their veins expand and their blood pressure lowers. Taking a hot shower does the same thing. Therefore, her blood pressure got so low that it wasn’t making it to her head and she got dizzy and passed out.”
Next, I asked why I couldn’t wake her. The doc explained, “Because our brains are smart.”
Apparently, our brains know to shut down everything but two things in order to survive.
- It must keep you breathing
- It must keep your heart beating.
That’s it. A person doesn’t need to see, hear, or speak to survive so the brain shuts those things down. Interesting, isn’t it! That’s exactly what happened. Hito’s heart was racing. Her breathing was heavy and she couldn’t see, talk, or hear me. When she could communicate, it was in Japanese. She couldn’t find her English words, she said. She’s so cute!
When it was all over, we discover that Parker had heard Hito fall. He was playing x-box in the bonus room. When Hito fell, Parker yelled down the stairs, “You alright?” When there was no response, did he stop playing his game to check out what happened. No. He kept right on playing.
Teenagers! They can be such juvinals!! Am I right?! …God lov’em.
So, if I had not of walked back through the house, there’s no telling how long Hito would have lain on the floor unconscious.
Moral of this story… don’t trust a teenage boy to respond to noises of any kind when playing video games. And, exercise and long hot shower’s don’t mix. If you feel dizzy after exercising or a long hot, steamy bath sit down and let your body cool until you no long feel dizzy. Then, rehydrate!