Every time I’ve tried to suppress a cough these past two weeks, I’m reminded of my third grade self. I used to get sent to the hallway because I coughed too much. We later discovered I was allergic to dust and mold, both of which poured into the classroom due to the old heating/ventilation system. Boy, were my parents mad when they found out what had been happening. Yet, I still feel guilty when I cough too much.
The tickle in my throat distracted me from the multiplication problem. With mouth closed, I coughed as quietly as possible to relieve the irritation.
The scratching intensified.
I focused again on my workbook, but I couldn’t hold back any longer. I coughed. And then I kept on coughing. Mrs. Wile looked my way, as did my third grade classmates. I knew what she was going to say, so I gathered up my pencil, math homework, and a book.
I was being sent to the hallway.
I don’t remember if there was a chair waiting for me or if I had to take the blue plastic one from my desk. I wasn’t made to stand or sit on the floor since this wasn’t supposed to be punishment. I was disruptive, but not on purpose.
The second floor hallway was deserted. After spending many an afternoon story time here, banished so that…
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