Krissy and I were walking to dinner the other night, just down Sunset, to a nearby Mexican place that took us past Childrens Hospital Los Angeles. Last year at this time I was in the midst of a clinical pastoral education (CPE) internship at CHLA. Memories of patient visits, on-call emergencies in the middle of the night, trying to wrap my mind around and deal with the pain, sickness, and death of kids. A great experience, but one that was heart-breaking and incredibly challenging.
I realized, walking by, that I have not forgotten most of the faces but I have forgotten a lot of the names – of kids, of families, and of hospital staff. People I visited multiple times over the course of multiple visits. People I spoke with, kids I played with, and families I prayed with. Seeing people through some of the worst trials they will ever go through in life. And I cannot remember their names.
I am not beating myself up over it. It is just something on my mind.