Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Tuesday, August 17, 2010 0
Mint chocolate on a hot day.

Working at the ER was in essence what I'd imagine working within a bowl of mint chocolate ice cream on a hot day felt like.
It was irritatingly hot, the walls and floor swathed in a rather pale shade of green with black peppering throughout, and things meltdown before you get a chance to grasp them; the halls echoed with the oh so familiar sound of the emergency room doors being battered open by a charging gurney mounted by the blood spattered and manned by unwavering EMTs, not far behind them; an entourage of family, friends and/or people who were at the wrong place at the wrong time.

I write now of an occasion that is destitute of any personal familiarity.

The setup was the same, doors burst open; gurney sped through, a blood beaten child no more than three atop it, medical technicians at the helm, the concerned entourage should soon follow.
But they did not, just under a minute after the gurney had stormed through to the operating room, a heavily veiled woman lurched into the ER, a woman who, despite her veil had a look in her eyes that sermonized indifference, a woman with a white-turned-scarlet child's shirt held tightly against her chest.

She sat across from the reception where the other interns and I took roost, shirt in hand, vacantly staring into the distance.
A doctor had immerged from the operating room some ten minutes later, all attempts to revive the child had failed and he was announced dead on arrival at 2:56 AM.

With death comes paperwork, no one knew this better it seemed, than the woman, who had gotten up and made her way towards the reception where the papers were to be drawn and the forms filled, the staffs attempts at consoling were futile as she seemed beyond any form of consolation.

The silence was deafening, all eyes were on the reception; the woman slowly filled out the forms for some time until finally, she spoke,

"I was his mother," she began, "I have three daughters and a husband, my husband worked at a factory near the medical quarantine and is a heroin addict, twelve years ago he had gone into an addicted rage and beat my three year old son to death with a tire iron as my daughters and I watched," she paused, as though to let those around her process what had been said, the customariness and monotony in her voice caught everyone off guard, but they said nothing,

"He had been taken to prison for seven years and upon his release, returned to his old habits not shortly after we had a second son" she droned, nodding toward the operating room, "History repeated itself, my son was smothered and beaten unconscious, my husband is now in custody and I'm going to bury my second son"
At this one of the younger female interns put her arm around the woman, "They're never letting him out." She said in a reinforcing tone, but the woman quickly cut her off,
"They're going to release him just like they did last time, they're only adding a couple of years to his sentence, and when he's released, he's coming after me and my daughters, I have no family or friends to run to and no money to leave the country" the intern had attempted to say something, but no words came out, "Just let me bury my son" the woman concluded, signing the last of the forms and making her way to the operating room to see her son one last time.

The world is an unpleasant place to live in once the curtains of faux solace have been lifted and its factual underbelly revealed, the tale I tell is but a hair off a lions mane of atrocities committed by the dominant species of this planet; to those who keep the curtains drawn I ask only that you realize that there are those who are forced to live behind it and that everyone, no matter how sheltered, will get their curtain call.
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