Sunday, July 31, 2011

Work Break

Caleb and Connor are owners of new bikes. Chris helped Caleb adapt to his new wheels.

Whose bike is it again?

Connor tried his bike too.

I'll admit it; some days I'm a slight bit envious when Chris leaves for work. Clad in blue scrubs and toting a stethoscope and lunch box, he'll kiss us goodbye and then "breeze" out the door. On particularly bad days, I'll mutter, "Lucky him." I suppose deep within the delusions of my mind I'm imaging his eight hour shifts are akin to one big break. I'm envisioning him laughing around the water cooler with the nurses, or maybe feasting on a nice big meal in the hospital cafeteria.

Yesterday, as I was feeling a little worn, I begged Chris to tell me a little about his day. (He's not one to easily share about the goings on in the ER, preferring to keep work at work.) Finally, he recounted the details of his ER shift. A teenage girl, victim of a motor vehicle accident, dying in front of him on the hospital gurney. After exhausting all lifesaving efforts, she couldn't be saved.

I asked, "Were you upset?"

"I didn't have time, because then I was ushered into the next room to treat a cardiac arrest," he responded very matter-of-factly.

I grew quiet as the guilt swept over me. Then and there, I realized my bad days really weren't that bad.

I vowed to change my perception on Chris's work, and appreciate what his life must be like within the walls of the ER.

Hope my memory stays long.

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