It's not something that happens very often. To most people, we're a vague memory on one of the worst days of your life. We don't often get to find out the outcome of the time we spend with you. Was our diagnosis correct? Did we do everything right? Did we make you better? Did you have any idea how much we cared?
However, last Tuesday, we had the honor of meeting a patient who, over the past year, we've thought of often. She was 10 weeks pregnant and had announced to her Latin Impact exercise class that this would be her last night teaching... when the lights went out, and the gunfire began. In the aftermath, she lay on the floor, bleeding from two gunshot wounds, wondering if she and her baby would survive.
It was a story the media loved. Pregnant fitness instructor shot, survives, has healthy baby boy 7 months later. She graciously gave countless interviews, bouncing the curly-haired cherub on her knee, her expression clearly saying, "Screw you, coward. We're still here." In one last media blitz on the incident, just following the one-year anniversary, a local trauma center honored the EMS crews who responded on that night, and 2 (well, really 3) of the survivors. It was very touching that a former co-worker actually flew back from his new home and job in Florida, to meet a patient he cared for over a year ago, shake her husband's hand, and lay eyes on the baby who made every bit of painful physical therapy worth it.
From tragedy, one happy ending.
4 days ago