I stood by and watched as eminently qualified and generally confident physicians left the OR, defeated, to tell a mom there was nothing more they could do for her toddler; he was dying.
He was dying of massive abdominal injuries sustained during a beating by her boyfriend.
I stood by and watched as her wall of denial finally crumbled; denial that had allowed her to stand by and overlook bruises, traumatic hair loss, vomiting and increasing unresponsiveness for nearly a week.
Denial that allowed her to operate on the assumption that, although he beat her, he would never beat her child; denial that allowed her to depend on him as a babysitter while she worked to support the family.
I stood by and watched a scene repeat itself for the millionth time.
I stood by and did nothing - when every instinct in me wanted to smack the shit out of both the abuser and the person who failed so spectacularly to protect her child.
I stood by reminding myself: Do not become the evil you deplore.
Standing by sucks - and is hard - so sometimes, I sit.