He tried everything he could.
Some Times You Can’t Save Them
As we pull away from the hospital soft, sad tears start again thinking of the woman sitting alone in that cold hallway.
“I’m sorry, Mrs. Taylor. I tried everything I knew for Logan. It wasn’t enough. I’m so sorry.”
“Sshhh, it’s okay. Thank you—.”
“Thank you, Robert. Some times nothing but a miracle will save them and we know those aren’t real. I’m sure you did everything you could. Thank you for trying, Robert.“ She took my white hand in her black ones and pulled it to her lips, kissed it lightly and let go. “Thank you, Robert, you’re a kind man.”
“Yes, maam, I’m so sorry.”
Her head dropped and she started sobbing again. I stood for a moment with tears running down my cheeks then turned and walked quietly away looking for somewhere private. I found a restroom, entered a stall and fell to my knees, dry heaving until my abdominals felt like burning coals, scalding tears ran down my cheeks with huge, wracking sobs between each heave. Later I would find both knees wore purple/green bruises.
A long, depressed and helpless walk back to the ambulance didn’t help. My partner asked, “What took so long?” A quick glance at my face answered the question. “Ohh, Sorry.” We’d been working together for a year and she knew how the failures effected me.
Why couldn’t I save Logan? All my training and years of experience weren’t enough, his injuries... “Damn you god for allowing it to happen!”
Does anything really matter? Is life worth living if it can be just yanked away on a whim? All my emotions turn to deep anger, a hatred of a society that teaches boys they have to die doing stupid shit to prove they’re men. Some would say it was his time and I would scream back, “BULLSHIT! At 16 it’s never just HIS TIME! Logan should have lived a LIFE.”
In 2 years she’d lost a husband and an only son. I wanted to go back and fold her into my arms, holding her, letting her cling to me and cry with her, offering whatever small comfort I could to this poor woman who was left alone to greave in a cold, echoing hallway where every sound is amplified.
But I can’t. I have to somehow go on so I can do my job and maybe save the next 16 year old who thinks a gun makes him a man.