Thursday, March 15, 2007

Wasted Time

A concert. The support act finishes. I walk back to the first aid post with my team. We sit and relax. After a while people head back out to their posts. I finish talking with the paramedic.

As I start to leave security brings in a girl. I lead her into the room and attend with the paramedic. She is pale, diaphorectic, and shaking. We give her a "convenience bag" to help her deal with any "protein spills" - a puke bag. We ask her questions: when did she last eat; when did she last drink; has she had anything else; does she have any medical conditions.

As we take a set of vitals on her the story comes out. Yesterday was the last day of her 9 day drinking binge. She often does this. She has done so since she was 13. That is six years of binge drinking.

We try not to be judgemental. We try to tell her, factually, what will happen to her body. We mention what is happening to her body now. We tell her that she has the DTs. She listens. She looks at us flatly.

Security return to get her details. She is told that she is done for the night - home time. She calls her mother. After a while I take her in a wheelchair to the parking area. I hand her over to her parent. I return to the post.

I reflect on how a pretty girl in her late teens has been an alcoholic for six years.

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