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{March 25, 2014}   Stalked

As a Firefighter/EMT, when we have bad days they very quickly turn into bad weeks. A bad day for us all too often means that we lost a patient or lost one of our own. This week I worked a scene of a young woman who completed suicide. There was nothing we could do for her, she was gone long before anyone called 911. Even though there was so very obviously nothing anyone could do to save this young woman’s life it tends to follow you, stalk you. Some things that you encounter in this profession never leave you.

For the last three days I’ve been haunted by the completed suicides that I’ve worked in my two short years as a firefighter/EMT. None of which were viable. The elderly male who put a gun in his mouth and sprayed his entire bathroom with blood and brain matter. The 19 year old girl who hung herself with the cord of a curling iron from an eye-hook in a bathroom ceiling. The 32 year old mother who we found face down in her own vomit, she overdosed on Oxycodone with her teenage children in the house. And then Saturday, the young woman who sat in her car garage with her car running.

The things I’ve seen make it hard to sleep at night. Natural death is hard to deal with, but when someone actively takes their own life it’s devastating for all involved. It kind of makes you angry, you studied your ass off to learn how to save people when they’re circling the drain, you’ve held the hand of the dying and tried to do your best to comfort them when all they want is more time on this Earth. Then you go and cut down the body of someone who decided that their life isn’t worth living. It definitely makes you question your faith in God, or whatever higher power that you believe in, that they allow the people who want to live, to die, while the ones who have no desire to live anymore can choose to take their own lives.

I’m not putting down people who are depressed, suicidal or mentally ill. I understand some of the emotional distress and chemical imbalances that play a role in depression. I’m just simply asking why things play out the way they do. I understand that I’ll never have an answer to that question.

Conclusion: death is difficult. My job has me knee deep in corpses, when I’d much rather do lift assists all day every day. You can comfort the families who’ve lost a loved one all day, but you can never breathe life back into a person when their time has come.

EMS: the profession of being stalked by death.



{March 1, 2014}   Blogger Flu

I guess I’ve got the Blogger Flu. I have all kinds of ideas for new blogs and I’m excited for them. For now I’ve settled on making one more blog, for a total of three. Check it out at professionallesbo.wordpress.com . This new blog, appropriately titled “The Professional Lesbian”, is less of a diary and more for funny stuff, pictures, quotes, etc. I think it will lean more toward the LGBT EMS and Fire Community but there’s guaranteed to be something for everyone.

Come on friends, check it out!!!



{February 7, 2014}   My Guardian Angel is an Alcoholic

There’s a reason the boys at work call me “Oopsie”.
Tonight I went home to make some dinner- ham, mixed veggies and some cheesy bread with freshly shredded cheese. I was rocking out to some Godsmack and cooking when I reached over to grab a spoon and caught my arm on the slicer. And it did what it’s supposed to do- it sliced- clean and deep. Si after a trip to the ER, six stitches and a dozen steri strips I’m put back together.
I will admit that I was quite pissed off until… my nurse walked in. Whoa baby! Drop-dead gorgeous and as sweet as can be. Of course I was still wearing my uniform so the ER staff automatically respected me (why don’t they treat everyone the same?). Obviously at that point I was all like, “Nah, it doesn’t hurt, it’s just a little scratch, nah I don’t any lidocaine…”. Haha.
“Pain hurts but only for a minute, life is short short so go on and live it, ’cause the chicks dig it!”.

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Wrapped like a mummy.



{December 15, 2013}   Buried Alive

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! I’m not real excited about it. Here in New England we got about a foot of snow over the course of nine hours last night. It’s snowing again now. I was called to staff my ambulance at three this morning and there was about five inches of snow on the roads that hadn’t yet been touched by a plow. Welcome to New England! Driving visibility was zero and it was only four degrees out.
I will admit that when it snows while I’m sleeping and I wake up in the morning I am in awe. How something so quiet, silent even, can do so much so quickly, cause such a big change. It’s amazing.
Off to clean up the silent monster!



{November 15, 2013}   Setbacks

natural_heart_healthThis evening while preparing for EMS training at the Fire Station we had an in-house emergency. Unfortunately that emergency was mine. I had what the ER docs explained as a “cardiac event“, however they couldn’t tell me exactly what it was. I had what we call a syncope episode, a loss of consciousness caused by a fall in blood pressure. Basically, I blacked out and hit the floor. My own boys from the firehouse took me to the hospital. They refused to allow our transport company to take me because they insisted on staying with me and taking me themselves. I was in the ER receiving treatment for about three hours before they decided to admit me, which I refused. Lucky for me, my best friend was also in the ER for a minor medical issue and found me when she got discharged. God bless her, she came and sat with me until I was able to get discharged. I put on a tough front, but that meant a lot to me. Tomorrow morning I see a cardiologist and then follow up with my Primary Care Physician.

Now I’m sitting on my bed writing this because I’m not able to sleep. More than likely because of the Nitroglycerin they gave me. All of this comes at a terrible time… I’m stressed to the max already from things going on in my personal life and I’m super busy with work, physical therapy, the pain clinic and kids. I can’t afford a setback right now. In Reba McIntyre’s words, “I guess the world ain’t gonna stop for me broken heart”.

So I’m catching up on my TV shows- Chicago Fire, Grey’s Anatomy, Chelsea Lately and American Horror Story.



{November 12, 2013}   Coping Skills

mvaThe tones went out for this motor vehicle accident at 17:57 this evening. Two of the occupants were flown to a major hospital by helicopter from the scene and it will be a miracle if either of them survive.

In Fire and EMS we tend to joke about these horrific calls as a way to cope with the horror we are faced with. It seems morbid, or even disturbing, to people who do not deal with these scenes. But for us it’s the only way we know. So… Don’t Drink and drive, or I get to see you naked!

Think people! And stay safe!



{November 1, 2013}   Don’t Drink and Drive

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It’s simply not worth it. This was my wake up call at 01:30 this morning. Miraculously the single occupant wasn’t seriously injured and there were no children in the child seats that were ejected from the vehicle.
Stay safe everyone!



{October 25, 2013}   Fall is Here

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Fall has arrived here in the White Mountains, bringing with it the usual beautiful hues and sleet/snow. It came in quick, too. It’s currently 34.5 degrees outside and they’re predicting a heavy frost overnight tonight. I personally don’t like the cold weather. I relish the 80-90 degree summer temperatures. I guess considering my previous statement you must think I’m crazy to be living in the heart of ski country. I suppose I am, a little anyway.

There are a few things that I enjoy about the colder weather: cuddling up in front of the fireplace with a good book and my kitty, homemade Tomato Bisque, Hot Cocoa and the warm, fuzzy feeling I get when watching the snow fall from inside my warm, cozy living room. Of course work really picks up for me in the winter so I stay busy too, between chimney fires and motor vehicle accidents.

This evening I keep turning on the outside light to see the snow flurries drift silently to the ground. It amazes me how such a silent event can change so much in so little time.

 



{September 4, 2013}   I’m A Big Kid Now

LGI finally broke down and ordered a new cell phone… a touch screen phone. I guess I’m finally growing up, or just breaking down and following trends? I’ve had the old flip-style phones since I got my very first cell phone ten years ago. However I’ve never had much luck with them: one went swimming in the river on a kayaking trip, one got washed with my clothes, two got thrown and smashed, one got run over by a firetruck and my latest one, the one I have now, is worn out. Half of the buttons no longer work and I’m going through texting withdrawals. So I got on the computer, felt like I was cheating on a significant other, and researched cell phones. I’ve decided to go with Straight Talk and the L38G Optimus Dynamic LG. It should be here Monday and I’ll be put to the test. I have all I can manage to use my Kindle Fire HD because it’s a touch-screen and there’s no keyboard or mouse. I’m quite technologically challenged, to say the least. I do feel confident in my latest endeavor, though. The only thing that disappoints me is that I cannot seem to find a case for it with either a Maltese Cross (fire department symbol) or the Star of Life (EMS symbol). I can’t even find a decent-looking pink camouflage case. So it looks like I’m going to have to settle for a plain pink and black case.

I guess I could be having far worse troubles than a physically disabled cell phone and not getting exactly what I want.

On the very bright side of things I’m finally getting into the Pain Clinic on Friday and will be able to get more pain meds. That will be a huge relief and help me out tremendously. I’ve spent much too much time working on the computer at my office for the last few weeks and my body does not like it. Deadlines are evil, I like to freelance!



{August 10, 2013}   B.I.T.C.H.

My new mug for the fire department, since I’m the only female 🙂

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et cetera