When the fire that burned up my family entered my bedroom, I did the right thing by hiding under my bed. There was more air down there by far. Also, there was no carpet because after Gypsy refused to stop urinating under my bed my parents removed the square of carpet around it. Then he stopped.
Gypsy wouldn’t stay under the bed with me, he just barked and barked and lunged out at the fire, trying to protect me. Then he stopped barking.
When my bed caught fire, I knew the right thing to do was lie as flat as possible on my stomach. The springs in a bed aren’t flammable so that would be a layer of protection from what was burning. Most of what burned didn’t fall through or was just ash but sometimes a large chunk of something hot came through and burned into my neck or back.
From what I could see of my room, it looked so different. Fire is colorful because it eats up color. My bedroom was like … those movies with no color. My dad liked those.
There wasn’t much air left. It got thick like a milkshake, and hot. I shut my eyes because it was so hot for them. I thought about sliding out but I couldn’t see and then I felt confused and sleepy. Then I fell asleep.
When I woke up I was in the hospital. I lived there for about a month. I got used to lying on my stomach. I can lie on my back now but I don’t really want to.
I am so lucky. Seventeen percent of my skin was burned off in the fire. Some kids lose 30% or half or all of their skin. If everyone donated just 1 or 2% of their skin, there would be no skin victims. There would still be victims but there would be enough extra skin for everyone. You don’t really even need the skin on your elbows or kneecaps.
I’m sad because I miss my dog and I miss my family. But mostly, I’m happy to be alive.
I can answer your questions now.
From I Am Currently Working On a Novel by Rolli. Now available.