This weekend we had a little medical "event" at our house. Esther and I agreed to host a high school senior prom "after party" for about fifteen 18-year-olds. Trouble ahead, right? We thought we'd give it a go as our son's friends are really great kids. And we made it clear there would be no drinking, no drugs. Just clean fun until they fell asleep in the wee hours of the morning. Parental supervision was close at hand.

We always knew the weak link in this was if one of the kids had been drinking themselves silly before they arrived. It turns out that is what happened. But it wasn't apparent right away. Each kid arrived around mid night all smiles and fresh breath. But within the hour one of the girls was sick in the bathroom and her friends had her sitting in the shower. My son assured me she would be fine. But the worried crying from her girlfriends made me wonder. I called the girl's mom and asked her to come over. It was 1:30 am. Then I went in for a closer look. The girl was at the very least passed out and, in my opinion, unresponsive. I didn't hesitate. I called 911.

It was only a couple of years ago when the high school girl next door had almost suffered alcohol poisoning. She needed treatment in the emergency room and it could have been much worse. I was worried about "much worse" this time and was relieved when the EMT's found our young guest to be "stable." Even as she lay almost motionless on our couch. They transported her to a nearby hospital for further evaluation and treatment. But no sirens blaring, thank God.

She was hospitalized for several hours and is doing fine after hydration and sleeping it off. But it was scary, and it raises the question of how quick to be on the 911 trigger finger. I say too often we are not quick enough. Men ignore the signs of a heart attack, actually many women do too. People wait when they are suffering a stroke, or a friend or loved one is. Death or disability comes too often. And with teenagers too, could an overdose or drugs or alcohol just be a passing misjudgment or the young person's fatal error – and ours, if we do not act fast.

My take on this is, when in doubt, call for help. There is little downside and you could save a life. Embarrassment counts for nothing.

Knowledge Is The Best Medicine of All!

Tell a friend!