Sunday, February 8, 2009

Life And A Snowball Fight


This morning I awoke to the sounds of children playing outside in the snow. I went to the living room to find Gareth sitting on the couch drinking a beer. He had gotten an emergency page to the hospital last night for one of his patients. A sweet little girl who I had seen the last time I visited him at the hospital. As I sat next to him, watching him peel the label off his beer bottle, he told me she didn't make it through the night.


This isn't the first time he's lost a patient since I've been with him, there have been quite a few and I've been by his side with a few words of comfort. Still this was the first one I had met and shared a laugh with and it brought tears to my eyes when I remembered that moment with her and the smile on her face that day and it left me without words. I took his hand in mine and we just sat there for the longest time not saying a word.


I've lost several people I've loved in my life and I know that feeling. Yet. until I started dating Gareth and listening to his stories, I never gave it much thought to the doctors and what they must feel at those moments. I always thought they kept themselves detached from the situation and in most cases that is probably true. Yet, for someone like Gareth who works with children, how can you not become attached to the hope that you can do some good for them. When it works, he comes home ready to celebrate and talks fast and non-stop about how good it went and how great it was to bring relief to a family. When it doesn't, in a case such as this, he sits quietly alone with his thoughts and all I can do is try to bring him some comfort and pull him out of those thoughts.


I took his hand and pulled him off the couch, got his coat and scarf and led him outside to where the children were playing. Before long we become embattled in a snow ball fight. During a lull in the battle he looked over at me and we caught eyes for a moment. He stood for a moment and smiled and I smiled back at him. As the snow ball fight resumed, he got hit in the side of the arm by one of the kids which made him laugh. I joined back in the battle standing next to my man defending off the neighborhood kids. Life continues.

10 comments:

Hamish said...

As long as he continues to do the service he does, he will have many more moments like last night. At least he has you by his side to come home to lean upon.

Anonymous said...

Those children will always be a part of him. I'm like how you chose to help him heal his heart by showing him life goes on, instead of words.

Jen said...

Honey, I want to give him a great big hug. I'm sure you already have that one covered, so just tell him I love him.

American Irish said...

Thanks for the comments.

Jen, yes I've got the hug part covered. He is off work today, so I'm making him dinner right now. Lemon chicken, black beans and rice. Then I'm going to give him a shave and a haircut and we'll have a nice long bath and make the night all about him.

WranglerMan said...

Boy, he's lucky to have you, kid!

Anonymous said...

Wow, that's just, awesome!

Proud East Coast Liberal said...

You really made me think about my friend that is a doctor in the ER at the city hospital. He rarely talks about work. I took him to dinner and said nothing more than THANKS for what you do.

p.s. - your a really good boyfriend.

Sebbe

Anonymous said...

Very nice post which shows us the Gareth's distress and your shared love .

This is encouraging for all the humans.

Laurent

molepunch said...

Arg, poor Gareth. Please send him regards from a mole.

Ing said...

Gareth sounds like such an amazing person. I don't know him but give him a hug for me.