*written not long ago but didnt have the heart to click Publish*
Please mind the language but the day pretty much feels like that. Today will be a better day they said (after overwhelmingly high number of patients yesterday). They lied because I had a cardiac arrest call at 10.10 am. And it wasnt a test call, which I love answering to because its just a test call. I try to be optimistic on the way to ED, maybe kid will be alright now and not an actual arrest. ‘PEA coming in…’ the ED consultant said. Ahhh no, that’s not good. PEA, Pulseless electrical activity means there is electrical activity in the heart but there is no pulse felt.
Bottom line is: the kid didnt survive. From a medical and resuscitation point of view, I couldn’t criticise on what we did. It was a smooth resuscitation, if you can ever call a resus that.
Now I’ll let you in – I have had experiences of non-survivable cardiac arrests in children and whenever parents are informed of our decision to stop, it is never easy to see their reaction. I have to bite my lip so I wouldnt cry myself. I tell myself if I am the consultant, my voice will be strong and I wouldnt cry (I hope).
The actual formalities after didnt bother me. What needs, must. Doing the formal examination after. Explaining to parents protocols of what happens after. Going to bereavement office. Its fine.
But when the sibling came to say goodbye, ok I just couldnt take that. Left the room to dab my eyes for a second. Finished my paperwork and returned to CAU.
I carried on because I had no time to digest what happened. ‘Nothing’ happened really – as I said, it was a smooth resus. Nobody made a cock up. Nobody shouted at each other. The leadership and teamwork went fine. The outcome just wasnt favourable. So I carried on with my day as the numbers just kept coming in.
Ah carrying on. I know these things happen and shit happens. Life goes on and tomorrow will be another day.
But I want to just lie here and think:
I had to do CPR on a kid today.
That kid didnt survive.
The parents of that kid and his siblings will have their lives forever changed now.
Shit happens and I know that.
But for now, I’m gonna think about that kid because its my way of paying respects for someone I only just met but had to do CPR on. And also I think if I do not ever think about this and bottle it up, one day it will come out and drag me down. And you know what, I’ll say it here – a kid died and I was there. So now, for this moment, I am sad. Tomorrow the sun will come out and all will be fine again. But tonight I am sad.