And a walk down memory lane
She opened the locker. Three years had gone by. So much had happened since the last time the locker was locked, so much had changed in the world. In her world too. She did not remember the lock code anymore and had to have it broken. She would come to remember later that it was the birth date of someone dear to her heart. 0804.
You could write a book about the locker and its content. It was a microcosm of her life before the pandemic, before the illness. But first stood out the names. Dozens of names, some old, Germaine, Pierre, Eugénie, some younger, Nicolas, Aurélie, Chloé, and some from elsewhere, Farida, Evgueny, Mauro. They came from all over the world and from all walks of life. They did not share much, except having been really ill, at the doorsteps of the world after.
She would stick their names on the back of the locker, praying for those undergoing surgery, remembering those who did not make it and cheering for those who did. Many of the names were testaments to the miracles that modern medicine and its practitioners were able to achieve, especially when all hope seemed to be lost.
Those she cared for were here on a last chance. They came to undergo the stuff of magic, which are procedures closer to science fiction if you fancy a less irrational description, but all the same if you asked her, because magic is what it really took to save these lives in dire situations.
People on whom medicine would have given up a few years ago, or even a few kilometers away, had a chance here. A reasonable chance. And I like to think her touch contributed greatly. She was the last face they saw before the great ordeal, a great responsibility which she did not take lightly.
She did everything she could to get them smiling and fearless to the stuff of magic which was supposed to mend them, and most made it through because a smile, a pinch of hope and a prayer are powerful spells too, maybe the most powerful of all.
She stood there, in front of the locker, memories rushing through her. She remembered her colleagues, most of whom had retired or moved on to other endeavors. She remembered the pandemic, her illness, and felt the toll that these three years had taken on her.
She remembered the old days, some happy, some sad, and all the hard times that had shaped her into the sharp professional she once was and never stopped to be, even with the past three years weighting on her shoulders.
All she needed to do now was to enter into the cold white light and take her place in the magic procedure of wizards bringing life back to those who had no other alternative than their magic.
She closed the locker, scrubbed up, donned the gown, and with her magic wand in hand, she went on saving lives, in honor of the names in the locker from a previous life.
To my lovely Rita, and to all the wizards, Elie, Stephan, Saïd, Emre, Joy, Olaf, Dominique, Philippe, Julien, Ramzi, Sacha, Régine, Sebastien, Bechara, Iolanda, Pierre, and the many others doing miracles at the edge of science and magic, to save lives which are otherwise doomed.
Let the board sound