it is a curious thing, when one of our own dies young. and I do mean curious there are just a handful of common things that kill young doctors and our profession demands nay normalises we find those common-things-that-occur-commonly this is no simple diagnostics it is more than morbid curiosity it is a need-to-know (if we) our profession our community did could have prevented this aminext? my thoughts on facebook eulogies are half-baked at best but how do we let ours go without sitting shiva a digital wake in the zerosandones of the cyberspace we know so well can never truly disappear not like their faces from lecture halls and f l ic k e r ing cafeterias not like their names now empty slots on duty rosters and registers and the roll and emails in memoriam (that only ever seem to memorialise the ancients that traversed the profession as though they who live not long enough to serve for decades are somehow not worth being facetiously honoured in our inboxes) as if in our youth we have not given our youth the rosy cheeks the unwrinkled eyes the hazy memories of smoky nights and bad choices (mostly) in sacrifice at the altar of an easily-inflamed profession that engulfs its young like an aberrant cell destroying that which must sustain it. /// this friday we will wear our crazysocks4docs soon we will wear armbands for imaginary safe working hours (briefly) security will escort us through dark passages and at some conference we will saytheirnames remembering they were bigger than this made-up community and at the going down of the sun and in the morning* seen from a bleary window at the scrubbing sink our chapped hands grasped in the suds of pink soap or on the icy roof of the hospital at shift change we will remember them*.
* with thanks to Laurence Binyon - "For the Fallen"