You do not have to tell me how precious life is.
I have watched life come into this world many times.
When I have watched a life come into the world, it is amazing to see the joy in the eyes of (most of) the parents. Even when you have a language barrier where you cannot communicate with the mother (which was the case with my first delivery — a Valentines day baby — and she’s now 5 years old!), the elation is unmistakable. You can understand that in any language.
I have also watched life slip away right before my very eyes.
I have seen the look in someone’s eyes as they go from life to clinical death (this is when the heart stops and they stop breathing — this is versus biological death which occurs after clinical death and is characterized by permanent cellular damage resulting from hypoxia, or lack of oxygen). The look in someone’s eyes as this happens — it’s scary, and sad all at once.
With all of those experiences, I understand exactly how precious life is. I have seen how hard it can be to bring a life into this world and how difficult it is to watch a life slip away from the confines of a broken body.
It is fragile.
It can be gone in the blink of an eye or with the snap of a finger.
And as many times as you witness death, or deal with the aftermath, it doesn’t get any easier.
But, how do you handle a situation where you have both life come into the world and life exit the world…on the same day?
I got an email today from my former boss this afternoon letting myself and former coworkers know about a tragedy that has touched one of our own.
A dear friend, who moved away about 1-1.5 years ago to take a position elsewhere in the paramedicine field, lost his wife earlier this week. A car struck her and she sadly died from her injuries a short time after the accident. What may be even more heartbreaking is that she was in the middle of her third trimester of pregnancy with (I believe) their first child. They delivered the baby and at the time of the email, the child was in critical condition.
I mentioned this to Jon the day I got the email. As I told him, I cannot imagine what he is going through, nor would I want to experience anything close to it. This coworker has been in the public safety arena for years. He, too, has a true understanding how precious life is. And right now, he is experiencing it on a personal level that he never thought he would have to, something we all hope not to have to experience and something we would never wish on someone.
How do you rationalize this to yourself? Can you? Even as a Christian, I understand that everything has a purpose and everything happens for a reason…but why this? Why would a pregnant woman be killed just weeks before giving birth to her baby, leaving her husband standing at the bedside of his newborn child (that no one expected for several more weeks) that is clinging to life.
I know something will come from this — something good. But I know this is the most difficult time my dear friend has ever had to go through. He has rough days ahead, too. Praying for you, GY…