Thursday, April 30, 2009

Strange Subway Situation

Myself and my friend Jules had planned to try and get together and do something during our two week break. We managed to sneak something in at the last moment (today). We were to meet at 12:30 for a 1pm movie. I was with my Dad at first sorting out the tax return stuff. After that, Dad and I parted ways. He went to submit the tax returns while I went to the mall to perhaps window shop until I met up with my friend.

When I got on the subway for my short ride, I noticed a woman who was with a man. She seemed to be upset. She was crying. Her male companion was handing her tissues as she wiped her face. I thought that she was upset about something he had told her. I looked but tried not to stare.

As my stop came close, the man and the woman got up. The woman got up briefly, then slumped back into an adjacent chair, holding her chest and crying out in pain.

"What's wrong with her?" another subway rider with a baby carriage asked the man. "Her chest is hurting her. We're going to go to the doctor tonight" he said. "I don't think you should wait that long. I'm calling 911". said the woman. I wondered what I should do. In that same moment, I knew it would be a good idea to push the emergency assistance button. The woman in distressed staggered out of the subway and onto the floor, crying and screaming in pain, yelling that it hurt, it hurt. The woman with the baby carriage passed the carriage off to her friend as she spoke to the emergency dispatcher on the other line. The lady with the baby carriage asked the man various medical related questions as relayed by the medical dispatcher. The woman in distress was on medication, and also had colitis.

Another lady came along and knealt down beside the crying woman, who was now lying flat on the floor. She tried her best to console her by rubbing her leg. The man, who had explained that he was friends with the lady, looked obviously frustrated and helpless.

Another lady came by and stood beside me, looking horrified. "What happened??" she asked me. I quickly briefed her on what was going on. The next thing out of her mouth was unexpected.
"Are you a Christian?" she asked me.
I hesitated...Yes I am. I didn't hesitate because I didn't want her to know I was a Christian, I just thought it was odd that she asked me that at that very moment. When I responded, she suggested that we pray together for this woman. Hey sure, why not?

She held my who hands and she prayed. I closed both eyes at first, but then kept one eye open to see that the lady on the ground was ok.

A woman in a red sweater came up to me and asked if anyone had taken her pulse. I said no. She expressed that she was a nurse and would take on that task of checking the woman's vitals as best as she could without any equipment. I think this nurse's existence right then and there set everyone's heart at ease...just a tiny bit.

After what seemed like an eternity, the paramedics came. One of 3 paramedics promptly put a mask on. People who weren't there to see what happened from the beginning simply saw a woman on the ground in obvious distress, and a paramedic wearing a mask. People began to slowly back away while using their purses/clutches to block there faces from the "swine flu' germs in the air. *rolls eyes*

Shortly thereafter, 2 more paramedics came with a stretcher. The woman was still crying and saying she couldn't breathe. As they continued to tend to her, it was clear that the paramedics seemed to have everything under control, so everyone returned on their way.

I found my eyes watering, watching this woman who was in obvious pain. A complete stranger. Geez, how awful was it for my mom &/or dad to watch me get a huge needle shoved into my knee while getting it tapped? How awful was it for my dad to hear my scream bloody murder while getting a bone marrow tap from my lower back on one occasion and from my hip on two other occasions? How awful was it for them to watch my wiggle due to stomach pain, on two occasions...one resulting in seizures and the other in a perforated sigmoid colon?

Wow. That's rough.

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