All of us have our own burdens, names chiselled on our hearts. We carry their bodies in silence. We carry them alone, refusing to cry. We hold them close, and keep the living at arm’s length.
We shouldn’t carry these bodies alone–just as no one should ever die alone. “Lay us down,” they would tell us. Breathe deep. Hear them whisper. They want us to carry them home—carry them home, and then let them go. They didn’t die so that we could watch each other suffer. Our patients, our families, our friends–they deserve better. They deserve more. We deserve more.
Read the full article by Jennifer Leckie (@browofjustice) published in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society (
sadly, not currently now open access!). To hear more from Jennifer, listen to her podcast.
- Leckie JD. I Will Not Cry. Ann Am Thorac Soc. 2018; https://doi.org/10.1513/AnnalsATS.201803-159IP
If you are experiencing depression or suicidal ideation, get support now: if you are in Australia, contact Beyond Blue.
Chris is an Intensivist and ECMO specialist at the Alfred ICU in Melbourne. He is also a Clinical Adjunct Associate Professor at Monash University. He is a co-founder of the Australia and New Zealand Clinician Educator Network (ANZCEN) and is the Lead for the ANZCEN Clinician Educator Incubator programme. He is on the Board of Directors for the Intensive Care Foundation and is a First Part Examiner for the College of Intensive Care Medicine. He is an internationally recognised Clinician Educator with a passion for helping clinicians learn and for improving the clinical performance of individuals and collectives.
After finishing his medical degree at the University of Auckland, he continued post-graduate training in New Zealand as well as Australia’s Northern Territory, Perth and Melbourne. He has completed fellowship training in both intensive care medicine and emergency medicine, as well as post-graduate training in biochemistry, clinical toxicology, clinical epidemiology, and health professional education.
He is actively involved in in using translational simulation to improve patient care and the design of processes and systems at Alfred Health. He coordinates the Alfred ICU’s education and simulation programmes and runs the unit’s education website, INTENSIVE. He created the ‘Critically Ill Airway’ course and teaches on numerous courses around the world. He is one of the founders of the FOAM movement (Free Open-Access Medical education) and is co-creator of litfl.com, the RAGE podcast, the Resuscitology course, and the SMACC conference.
His one great achievement is being the father of three amazing children.
On Twitter, he is @precordialthump.