Unaware of the miraculous

Published 9:59 pm Tuesday, December 3, 2013

By Rex Alphin

Unextraordinary. That is how she felt. Just another common human being.

(Her brain was at that moment linking together billions of neurons in such patterns and connections as to enable a process whereby collection of the senses and retrieving past actions generates a thought).

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She took a deep breath and sighed.

(Her diaphragm, sitting at the floor of her chest cavity, enlarged, thus creating a vacuum whereby oxygen rushed in through the nose and into the nasal passages, filtered by hair-like structures and mucus, being warmed and then passing through the pharynx and larynx and into the trachea. It was then carried to the lungs and into smaller and smaller tubes and finally into bronchioles and hundreds of millions of air sacs, where it was exchanged for carbon dioxide, which was then forced out through the same path).

She stood up.

(The skeletal muscles contracted and pulled her legs into vertical, while swiveling in the hip joints, being attached by tendons. Her skeletal structure enabled her body to maintain shape while balancing on the balls of her feet as the ligaments connect her bones).

She gazed into the mirror.

(As the pupils adjusted, light passed through the cornea, the aqueous humor, the lens and vitreous humor, projecting onto the retina, sending impulses through the optic nerve, which sent messages to the brain to be interpreted.)

She blinked.

(A tear film flushed over the eyeball, covering it with a natural bacterial disinfectant and drained impurities away through the tear drainage sac).

“I’ll never be anything special, just a plain, ordinary person,” she thought, as she lay down to sleep.

(Her heart involuntarily beat for the 22-millionth time, forcing a substance called blood through a branching network of vessels of about 60,000 miles. This blood consisted of red blood cells to carry oxygen, white blood cells to attack viruses and platelets to prevent bleeding.)

She dreamed of being extraordinary in some way.

(Ka-thump, ka-thump, ka-thump….)

Rex Alphin of Walters is a farmer, businessman, author, county supervisor and contributing columnist for the Suffolk News-Herald. His email address is rexalphin@aol.com.