Skip to main content


Showing posts from September, 2014

Heroic Measures

I'm reading The Geography of Bliss, a nonfiction account of a curious and somewhat discontented journalist who decides to hunt out who the most happy people are and why. On his search, he visits Bhutan and meets a man who runs the country's think tank, appropriately named Karma. Karma advises the author, "You need to think about death for five minutes every day. It will cure you, sanitize you....It is this thing, this fear of death, this fear of dying before we have accomplished what we want or seen our children grow. This is what is troubling you....Rich people in the West, they have not touched dead bodies, fresh wounds, rotten things. This is a problem. This is the human condition. We have to be ready for the moment we cease to exist."

But I touch dead bodies, handle fresh wounds (both physical and mental), and rotten things. I, and my fellow emergency department coworkers bear the brunt and weight of the rancid realities of life and death and what happens in betw…