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22 February 2009 @ 11:26 pm
Theatrical Muse: Week 271: Question 271  
Name: Dr. Sid Hammerback

Fandom: CSI: New York

Word Count: 927

Talk about a time you were sick.

There was a time, in the past now, where I ate something I wasn’t completely aware of, was allergic to something it contained, and subsequently went into anaphylactic shock as a result. Due to the awareness and unselfishly caring nature of a co-worker, someone I love and appreciate as a very good friend, it was seen to that I received medical assistance within the critical window of opportunity, not only saving my life, but the quality of it as well. It was a circumstance that very accurately portrays the concept of first aid education being relative and essential to the workplace, any workplace. While it may be said that people who work in our line of work, sorting through crime scenes and dead bodies, doing things to cause the arrest of criminals, put themselves at a higher risk of injury, it wasn’t even my job that directly lead towards my sickness. It was only because Stella was sufficiently educated and possessing of critical situation solving skills, that I continue living and working as I do today.

In cases of direct choking or smothering, even in drowning, there is one main contribution to the victim’s demise, a lack of air, a lack of having easy, unrestricted access to air, as well as the fully functioning ability to take it in to fill one’s lungs. In my professional role as a Medical Examiner, I only really see the people who die because of this, but there living variations of such an injury. Prevent adequate breathing; so much so that the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide is thrown out of appropriate levels for long enough, if the person does live then there is a good chance that they have brain or organ damage, or even a combination of both. Taking this as evident fact, I very well could have ended up brain damaged or dead on that day I fell to the morgue floor, throat swelled, unable to call for help or to enact upon myself any form of assistance.

Thinking back to the call of death which I so frequently see answered in my daily work, there is much that can be said about the living, and the deceased. It is said of people in my particular job, that we see people on the worst day of their lives, and that it is we, it is us, who must speak for them, because they can not, and no one else will. This is all very true in some way or another, yet while an ME, or a Coroner as it can be called, does not work on the living, the old medical adage still rings true. Funeral home workers and family aside, when it comes to a victim in the morgue, someone who has died at their own hands, at the hands of someone else, or as the result of an accident or mishap, I am one of the last people to see to them. First, I do no harm, then always I simply just do my job, as best I can, for life and death each have their own form of sanctity, and should be treated with due respect.

People may argue that medicine allows people who would otherwise die, to live, thus preventing the forward movement of evolution. I am personally thankful though, after having thought it out at length in the period since, that all in all, I was a good thing I was in the circumstance that I was on that particular day. Who is to say, after all, that if I did not make a living by speaking for the dead, that someone else, somewhere else, would have taken the action necessary to save me when I mistakenly took something into my body that I wasn’t meant to? It was a fortunate circumstance that Stella did what she did when I was sick, and that the health care system saw me right afterwards.

I am a man of medicine and science, and I see the body as a living, breathing, moving, thinking, work of art, for each of us, in our many variations and trivialities, are wonderful beings. Being sick, suffering the ills of the physical or mental body is no fun though, because illness, of any kind, can have the tendency to rip us apart, our cells and our thoughts collapsing upon one another because of the strain. People like me, like other Doctors, working in hospitals and clinics, offices, we have come up with formulas, books and writing to explain diagnoses and treatments that give guidance and direction. A cut may heal, the grieving will end, but the ramifications still echo, whether the person at hand dies or not, whether their illness heals, or continues.

That day I could have died, I had let my conscious thoughts slip a little. I was in a hurry, as usual, and I didn’t think to examine and check, because it is an implicitly accepted thing by my brain, to be aware of my surroundings. I should have known, but I forgot to inquire and question, so without Marianne there to caution and warn me, without my boys there to remind me to be so on the point, it seemed, it was left up to Stella to save me. I am thankful, in more words than I can express, for what she did for me, the risk that she took, because while my life has had its significant shakeups, its violent trials and tests, I still enjoy it, I still love it, very, very much.
Current Mood: gratefulgrateful
Current Music: Save the Life of my Child - Simon and Garfunkel