Some memories are easy to blog and share. This is not one of them.
But sometimes life hands you these real moments, mixed in with the others.
Let me set the stage...
I'm putting Addie to bed, tucking her in and giving her hugs and squeezes. Out of the corner of my eye I see Daddy doing the same for Ellie. Then I see him drop to the floor and Ellie is laughing so hard I find myself wondering if she should get up and use the restroom again. I continue to give Addie her hugs, and then go in to Ellie's room to do the same for her. She is still laughing so hard that she is crying.
I walk in and nearly pass out. There had been a major human gas leak incident and to the best of my ability to think in the moment, it seemed to me that it originated from either her or Daddy.
It is so bad that I couldn't stand. I fell to the ground. Ellie laughed even harder. I couldn't even give her my hug.
In an emergency situation, like fire or a human gas leak of extraordinary measures, it is important to remember the rule: STOP. DROP and ROLL. That's what we did. We dropped to the ground and tried to escape through to the hallway.
Unfortunately when I tried to stand in the hallway, I couldn't! The gas leak had permeated through to the hallway and was spreading! I vaguely recall looking at Ellie (still laughing) and thinking the air between her and I seemed thick and visible.
There was no chance I was going to be able to complete my hug mission, but the girls insisted. Gathering all my strength, I took a deep breath (keep in mind, I was still as close to the floor as possible... literally) and stood up, rushed in for a quick hug and then quickly back to the hallway, dropped to the floor and breathed in where the layer of air was still below completely toxic levels. I repeated the effort with Addie.
I doubt the girls realized the seriousness of the situation. The human gas leak was so bad that the air quality was toxic, I'm sure, but did they stop laughing? Heck no! In fact, to this day I'm left wondering if they laughed themselves to sleep that night.
Maybe it was a laughing gas attack, but whatever it was, the stuff was lethal.