He had only one eye. And he was my real big crush as a 19 year-old student nurse in a military hospital in the Philippines…Sporting a black patch over his left eye, just like a handsome pirate, Sammy brought out his guitar and sang “our song”. “Skyline Pigeon” is not a love song but it felt like one to me. Then he winked at me.
“This is EMS. You’re getting a 9-year old boy in traumatic arrest after a direct blow to the chest with a baseball. He’s intubated; we’ll be there in 2 minutes. ” My hands shook when I replaced the EMS notification phone.
The baseball stunned our patient’s heart, and it was being squeezed to life by the frantic efforts of the paramedics. A nightmare coming to our doorsteps.
We stood at the bedside and shared each other’s anger. The thought of the carnage this man left behind made me recoil in disgust. I felt a need to cry; bile rose up in my throat. Even in repose, this man’s face looked so evil, almost satanic. Despite all the repulsion I felt, I had no choice; I had to take care of this patient. My training and my ethical responsibility will ensure that I give this patient the best of care, no matter what.