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There’s something about hospitals that made me never want to be near them. They always terrified me despite my mom being a nurse and my dad having been to the hospital a few times because he’s been diagnosed with diabetes, or experiencing an aftermath of his surgery nearly two decades later.

I believe it was around 2010, if not a few years ago.

A startling reality that I could never take out of my mind while it was my mom who was waiting on being processed through emergency when she was belatedly diagnosed for C.Diff. I could be wrong and be thinking back to a time when my dad was experiencing an issue from his stomach due to the staples inside in his stomach because the doctors back in 1997 didn’t use staple wires that could dissolve.

But this memory in specific still sits with me.

I was walking through the front hallways of Brampton Civic Hospital, coming from the Tim Hortons and heading back to the Emergency Department. The details around it are still foggy.

But I remember this one scene.

Two women, two teens, standing in the hallway next to the Snow elevators. They were crying. The two women were hugging each other. The female teenager was sitting on the floor against the wall with her knees up to her chest and face buried in her hands. The male teenager was also leaning back on the wall but he was standing with his arms folded over his chest. A police officer stood next to them.

I remember watching the agony as another woman approached to hug them and broke down in tears.

It broke my heart because there was the likelihood that a loved one had been shot. Or something grave.

The thing about journalism is that as reporters, we are to report without bias. We are to be professionals and get the story while trying to sympathize with the victims of a major accident. But the moment we fall away from our profession, we have the chance to be human. Just not in the public eye. We are the messengers of the public to the people of the city, province… the country. We are not allowed to express our own opinion in our work, unless we’re writing an opinion piece. We break away from the emotion of that reality.