Edge

What A Human Body Should Look Like

I take the deepest breath of my life.

“Bill, let’s go. Don’t look at her face. I want her blood pressure, now.”

I take the deepest breath of my life everyday at 4:45 p.m. before the sliding doors open.

“Bill, get up on the table, push her face together and hold it. I need to get her face back roughly to where it should be if I’m going to.”

I take the deepest breath of my life everyday at 4:45 p.m. before the sliding doors open and the disinfected hospital stench engulfs me. I hold it for as long as I can before slowly exhaling and becoming Bill. My friends call me Billy. At 4:45, when that breath escapes, I’m Bill, an ER transporter.

People say you get desensitized after a while. Not everybody does. Bill did, but Billy never will.

After a couple weeks, blood is blood. Sometimes I’d see a face on the stretcher and I’d forget where the eyes, ears, nose, and mouth were supposed to be. Rarely do I see an arm stick out at an angle that I’ve never seen before.

People say you get desensitized after a while. Part of you does. Bill did, but Billy never will.

I’m tearing a women’s shirt off and applying pressure. I look up to the face and it’s my mother on the stretcher. Her face looks perfectly normal, but she’s blonde, not a redhead. Someone taps me on the shoulder. It’s Billy.

“Bill, save her,” he yells. “Save her.”

I wake up panting. My sheets stick to my sweaty arms and legs. I strip while shuffling toward the bathroom. Unable to sleep, I stand naked in front of my bathroom mirror; it reminds me what a human body should look like.

Carter Stanton may be contacted at r.stanton@umiami.edu.

April 21, 2008

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Boston College star Ky Bowman came down with a 102-degree fever on Saturday night. Jordan Chatman an ...

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Sunday: ▪ New UM defensive coordinator Blake Baker has asked UM ...

Emese Hof and No. 20 Miami think they can play with anyone, and it shows. Hof scored 18 of her 25 po ...

New University of Miami baseball head coach Gino DiMare wanted to start strong. He got perfection. T ...

Former University of Miami star running back Mark Walton was arrested late Friday on a charge of mis ...

UM alumna Alina Mayo Azze, who has covered a myriad of topics during her 37-year career, has been a ...

Happiness and well-being scholar Tal Ben-Shahar is UM’s newest Distinguished Presidential Scholar. ...

The University of Miami will host the first symposium to explore LGBTQ human rights across the Ameri ...

UM experts react to a new ban that prohibits people in Key West from using certain types of sunscree ...

A matchmaker extraordinaire, Ricardo Cepeda, the manager of the UM Zebrafish Facility, is passionate ...

The No. 20 Miami women's basketball team stormed back from a 14-point deficit to pick up the bi ...

Brian Van Belle struck out five over six shutout innings to help the Canes sweep Rutgers on opening ...

The Hurricanes dropped a tight contest with the Eagles in Chestnut Hill, 64-57. ...

The sophomore first baseman slugged his second homer of the weekend to lead the Canes to a series wi ...

Junior Renate Grimstad led the way for Miami and is tied for 18th at one-over-par, while sophomore K ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.