Friday, April 7, 2017

The wounded

Woke up to news of U.S. airstrike on Syria. Ummm....not sure what the consequences of that are going to be!

Last night I was scrolling through FB and happened to click on a stranger's page that has a lot of friends in common with me. I ended up reading the pages of a family whose teenage daughter was wounded in this week's bombing.

As they attend one of the local churches here, a prayer chain had gone out, but now I had a face to fit the name.

Based on the posts I saw, it went like this:

-the teenager was helped out of the metro by a woman who heeded her request to go home to her parents, despite her injuries

-the girl only knew her father's cell phone number from memory, so they called her father, who called her mother to warn her that her injured daughter was about to show up on her doorstep

-they called an ambulance, which arrived in about an hour*

-the girl had some shrapnel on her leg and a ruptured eardrum, and required surgery

-her sister was having trouble getting to the hospital due to the transportation collapse, but a stranger picked her up and drove her all the way there

-the sister described an investigator coming into the hospital room and interviewing the wounded teenager and examining the blood on her clothes (to look for traces of the terrorist, the sister surmised)

-the mother shared about feeling relief that her daughter was showing interest in normal things, like food and manicures, even while still in the hospital

Often the victims of these tragedies are faceless to us, but when I imagined a terrorist's blood on my child (or sister!), I began to imagine what kind of thoughts might go through someone's head.

So, now you can kind of picture what the families of victims might be experiencing. The sun is shining outside (earlier today anyway), but the marks are still on their bodies for now.

*In St. Petersburg it is customary (and free of charge) to call an ambulance for minor illness and injury, as it is a way to get some medical attention without taking a sick person on public transportation. In this case many of the emergency vehicles had been mobilized to the attack site, and her injuries were not life-threatening, so an hour's wait probably wasn't too bad. See more in my Soviet medicine post from several years ago.

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