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A Contradiction - But it's Better if You Do

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February 16th, 2011

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12:12 am - A Contradiction
(TRIGGER WARNING: [accidental] harm to children)


She lay there by the side of the pool and she didn't breathe.
People stopped swimming, walking, with drinks half-raised to their mouths. They sat up on sunbeds and stopped working at the bar and some began to cluster around the girl and the doctor, just to watch.
She was tiny and convulsive and the doctor, an Englishman on holiday, had made her spit water; nobody could tell if that was a good thing. I told my younger step-sister why fits happen and how to give people CPR as the girl's chest was worked for her.
By now my mother was treating her brothers for shock, and I was nearby in case I was needed, and two things occurred to me simultaneously; the fear that my mother had experienced a few days before while I lay winded and dizzy beneath a quadbike was more important than anything else that had happened that day; and how my ability to deal with these things in anything other than a calm and professional manner after two years of learning how to deal with death and suicide was more than a little sad.
The girl lay still until a lifeguard finally came and swept her up into his arms, her limps jangling as he carried her away to an ambulance, too late.

(I'm Yours With Caution)

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