Friday I wake at 4am feeling queasy; 10 minutes later I have severe chest pains. By 4.30am I'm in an ambulance; by 5am in coronary care connected to an ECG and being injected with morphine. I struggle to make sense of the voice which is saying "You have had a heart attack." As I drift through the mugginess I realise my family are standing, tearfully, around my bed. I try to say "It's OK, I'm all right", but my mouth doesn't want to perform properly.
Sunday My husband controls his exasperation when I ask him to bring my school bag next time he visits. When my head arrives later, we chat about medical things and about how he has managed to get a long-term supply teacher for my class. I feel like Paul Daniels when I produce the planning for next week. He protests and I say "It was done anyway".
Monday I'm adapting to hospital life. On this ward everything is calm and peaceful and no one rushes about or looks harassed. A friend visits. "I took a full dinner break today," she says. "We all made a point of it on your behalf." I wonder if I'm going to become a sort of icon for the teaching profession; teachers will warn each other, "Remember what happened to herI" Tuesday I'm transferred to a specialist hospital where I'm taken to theatre and watch as a tube is inserted into my femoral artery - isn't that the one that allows you to bleed to death? A stent is inserted to keep the artery open. Sorted!
Friday I can go home - providing I don't overdo it. I can't believe I've only been away a week. I am overwhelmed by the good wishes. The general theme of the messages is "take it easy". I might just do that.
Brenda Gunning teaches at Castle Hills primary school, Scawthorpe, Doncaster