Marta is a lifesaver.

Before you ask, no, I don’t mean the candy, I mean the title “Lifesaver” (though, if she were the candy lifesaver, I like to imagine that she would be a nice green one. They are, after all, the best of all lifesavers.  Not only are they not the “bad color”, but their flavor is second to none. But I digress).

Just so we’re clear, Marta has been a lifesaver for many years. It started the summer of 2009 when she joined the ranks as a lifeguard at camp.  Lifeguarding is a noble calling in which scooping distressed children out of the water and being able to swim 800 meters are their own reward, but getting a smashing tan is a perk that comes with the territory.

Marta’s lifesaving progressed logically as she began nursing school in the fall of 2009.  Between reading textbooks and cramming for exams, she learned to wrap wounds, give injections and help people with their hygiene. (I played with the idea of extrapolating on this last point, but I think I’ll spare you the nausea and just say that she has become a professional “scooper and wiper”.  You can fill in the rest of the details by yourself).  She graduated this spring and passed her boards shortly after, and now she works on a very high-stress floor in a very large hospital in Fort Wayne.

All of these are factors in her lifesaver-ness… and contribute to her heroic act less than two days ago.  There we were, minding our own business (sumo wrestling in the middle of the church at 2 in the morning) and suddenly someone runs up to us shouting Marta’s name.  Her observant lifeguard eyes spotted the choking child nearby and her vast training in nursing school kept her nerves calm as she sized up the situation.  She noted that he was still passing a small bit of air through his windpipe (which is why the two other people who had attempted the heimlich on him had not been successful).  With one strong pat on the back, she loosened the jawbreaker from his airway and a flood of vomit followed. (All the gawkers turned away at this point.  I find it interesting that people would rather watch other people choke than throw up).  The young man was fine (though I imagine he won’t be eating jawbreakers for a while…) and Marta walked away a (green) lifesaver.