It all started on a Tuesday night. My husband and I had been on our daughter about completing her school work, and since it was the end of her quarter, I’d been on her like white on rice about her “missing” assignments and such. So, she suddenly realized she had a couple of things due on Wednesday. After a long “fun-filled” night, she finished them at 1:15 a.m.! I’d been up studying the night before, so I was tired, to say the least.

Wednesday morning I ran on a couple of hours of sleep and a lot of grumps. I pushed through work feeling groggy and gross, and thankfully, snapping only a couple of times.

I am also a student, so after work, I headed to school and realized I hadn’t taken my meds for the day. After 20 minutes of some Mad Max skill to find a parking space, I got my stuff together and planned to schlep to the library to pound out a rough draft that is due for class. I pop my pills and chug my drink. I felt the day might be looking up.

Almost to the library with one more building to walk through, I took a much-needed bathroom break (after chugging the water to take the pills). Suddenly, I couldn’t breathe. Nothing … no air flow at all. I panicked and willed myself to do something: breathe, cough … anything. I tried to push some air out, get some movement of any kind going, and at that moment a billowing cloud of smoke, dust or something came shooting out of my nose!

Like an exhaust blast, larger than my head, I sat there in front of my eyes for a few seconds before it was gone. People all around looked at me as I leaned forward, but no one asked if I was okay or stopped to offer any help. As the cloud of death dissipated in front of my face, it was replaced by a horrific burn that started to build in my nose, chest and eyes. I pushed my way outside to the grass and began coughing. When I say it burned, I thought my freckles might melt off my nose; the pain was insane. I finally took in little gasps of air as the burn and pain spread down into my chest. The burning changed from ghost-pepper inferno to a slightly less cayenne-pepper burn, and I tasted cinnamon. AH HA!

I was taking cinnamon capsules (was taking… not anymore). For some reason, it must have gotten stuck in my throat, or I burped it up—that part is not very clear… and once the capsule dissolved a cinnamon bomb lodged in my windpipe that I snorted out like Puff the Magic Dragon! I rushed to the library bathroom to wipe the cinnamon snot from my face and not gag. I filled my water bottle, rushed into a stall, and started to blow my nose, rinse my mouth out and not die! Never, have I felt anything like that. I couldn’t get a good breath in. The burning was now like a slow roast over an open fire as I coughed up bits of phlegm and cinnamon. I chugged more water and tried to wipe the Blair-Witch-like mascara off my face. Everything hurt and my head pounded. I left school and prayed I could make the drive home. Almost home, I broke out into a sneezing fit. Somehow, I managed to Kegel and not pee in the car. However, my windshield was not so lucky; by the time I got home, it was covered in cinnamon spittle.

I made it home, flushed out my nose, washed my face, downed something for my head, taking extra drinks to make sure nothing was stuck in my throat to avoid any repeat performances and called it a day!

I missed class, my workout and my dignity.

I had a little more compassion for my daughter.

How was your Wednesday?

Amanda Taylor
Amanda Taylor lives and writes in Newnan Georgia just south of Atlanta. She makes her home with her husband and house of animals, college daughter and foster children. Amanda writes about life, faith and all the joy and mess that comes with that at TingleTaylor. She loves to share her messy stories in hopes that others will find joy, affirmation and hope in reading them. During the day she teaches art to 500+ wild elementary school children! You can find her writing over at SheLoves Magazine,The Mudroom and A Voice In The Noise. She welcomes everyone to join her life over at Instagram Twitter and Facebook


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  1. Well written, Amanda. I was just shocked that no one came to your help when you were obviously having a terrible time of it. Maybe we can meet on Facebook.
    Mary Derksen

  2. Wow! That is really crazy and I too am so sorry and so sad no one came to help you. Wish I could have been there for you. My article in this issue is also about cinnamon…something funny about that cinnamon!

  3. I as you mom think that I should have been there to help you when no-one else would. Then I could have witnessed it first hand and got to laugh at you, again. Mother’s sometimes just need a good laugh at their child’s expence.

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