Yep, summer has officially begun.

Car accidents, boating accidents and houses struck by lightning sums up my busy day.

I’m on the third floor and it’s eighty-six degrees in my bedroom. HOT! I’ve got an air cooler that you put water in and it’s supposed to be kind of like an A/C unit. Well, it doesn’t seem to be doing anything, so I ran down to the Fire Station where we have an awesome ice machine and got a bucket of ice. I dumped a bunch of ice in the water intake and then set a bowl of it behind the unit, where the air intake is. I’m hoping it helps cool it down a little. It’s much too hot and humid to sleep.

Hopefully tomorrow is a bit quieter. I have a muscle knot in my neck that is actually visible to the naked eye, it’s so big, and I’m hoping to get it taken care of tomorrow before this headache completely consumes me.

Before the storms rolled in today.

Before the storms rolled in today.

{March 7, 2013}   Stupid Doctor

I find out today after a radiologist looked at my xrays that there is a hairline fracture of my fifth metacarpal, otherwise known as the bone that extends from the pinky into the hand. That’s why it hurt so much when they relocated my pinky. I have another ER attending contacting orthopedics on my behalf because they seem to keep forgetting me.

I’m in another temporary half cast until orthopedics decides to see me. And I have no feeling in my pinky. I don’t think they believed me because the doc poked it several times with a scary looking metal tool. When he didn’t get any reaction out of me I think he got it.

Our local hospital sucks.

{July 16, 2012}   Getting Nervous

My EMT class starts tomorrow and I’m getting nervous. Crazy thoughts keep going through my mind like: Once I’m certified, peoples lives will be in my hands. What if I screw up and do more harm than good? What if I overlook the smallest thing and the patient pays the price?

I wonder if this is normal for soon-to-be EMTs? At this point I’m lacking the confidence that it’s going to take to be a good EMT. Or student, for that matter. I’m told the class that I’m attending is a large one with a lot of students. That makes me nervous, I do better in more intimate settings. I’m praying that I can keep my anxiety at bay so I can get through this class.

On the bright side I see my psychotherapist this morning, so I think our forty-five minutes will be dedicated to calming my nerves and anxiety and pep-talks. So far everybody on the department and most everybody in my family believes in me and supports me in this new venture. I guess I worry about letting them down. What if I don’t pass my clinical? Or practicals or CBTs? I have it in my mind that the testing is a one-shot deal, but in reality you can keep doing the testing until you pass it. But if I fail the first time, does that mean I’m not cut out for being an EMT?

Oh the questions and worries!

{June 11, 2012}   I Complain Way Too Much

We got a call today for a brush fire. It just happened to be a few houses up the road from my parent’s house. It was a whopping eighty-five degrees in the sun and about one hundred and six on scene. With all of our fire gear on I thought I was going to pass out. Each fire call I go on I realize more and more that I am in this mostly for Rescue.  To add to my decision of wanting to do Rescue versus fire fighting, my body can’t handle the weight of the gear. My body hurts twenty-four/seven as it is, then you throw fifty pounds of gear on top of the pain and you have a complete wreck. Eventually the adrenaline wears off and all I think about is how bad I’m hurting. I’m in rough shape after fighting that fire today and all I want (believe it or not) is a cold shower and a hot meal. Oh, and a nice, long nap, uninterrupted by my pager going off to inform me of yet another emergency.

I have some good news to report, too. I called my psychotherapist this morning and explained my need for an appointment sooner than July second. Thankfully, she squeezed me in for this Thursday.

{June 10, 2012}   The Inexperienced

*Rookies in the field of Fire & Rescue

The rookies, they’re more enthusiastic than their senior counterparts. They’re one step ahead of their experienced coworkers when responding to a call. The adrenaline pumps through their veins just a little harder, a little faster. They rely more on instinct and textbook procedures, rather than experience.
The rookies move quick. They get excited, like a little kid on Christmas morning. What the more experienced coworkers do not tell the rookies, as a sort of code, for fear they will swerve their career paths from Fire & Rescue is this:
The excitement tends to go away, more and more each time you load a lifeless body onto the stretcher. The adrenaline pumps weaker, replaced by dread and fear in the form of nightmares: the burning building, too hot to enter, with a child inside. The car accident caused by a drunk driver, he escaped without so much as a scratch, but he killed the young mother and father in the other car, leaving two young children parent-less. Or worse yet, being called to a home of your own family, arriving in time to find out that it’s too late, they’ve stopped compressions.
The haunts that these workers go through on a daily basis are inconceivable. But they do it because someone has to, and they just happen to care enough to be the one for the job. I use the words “job” and “career” very lightly here, because the fact of the matter is that most small-town Fire and Rescue is on a volunteer basis. These men and women work all day at their nine to five grind, if they’re lucky for the hours to be so simple, and then go on a call at two in the morning because something’s wrong and someone needs their help. I can tell you from my own experience, that on the way out the door in the wee hours of the morning, they’re not thinking they can’t afford the gas to drive across town and not get paid for it. They’re not thinking about how they have to get up in a few hours to get their kids off to school and go to work. They’re focused on the emergency. Every emergency, every call, is treated as a life and death matter in their eyes.
The horrors rescue responders face, from violent encounters with patients to sleepless nights, wondering what could have been done different to change the outcome of that one call. I have a pretty good idea of what I’m up against in continuing my education to become a licensed Emergency Medical Technician. I have already been on several calls ranging from a middle aged man with a toothache to an older man overdosing on medication and jumping out of a second story window. There are frustrations and often bewilderment, but there’s also that feeling of satisfaction of being the help, being the comfort to someone who is in distress. My Chief has a saying that I’ve grown fond of: “Don’t make someone else’s emergency your emergency. Your safety is first. Once you arrive on scene, the emergency is over, like it never existed. It’s in your hands and you have it under control.”


{May 19, 2012}   Eerily Quiet

So far it’s been quiet around here this weekend… too quiet. The only call we’ve had since Wednesday morning was a lift assist for a seventy-three year old man at quarter to four this morning. A couple of our guys are gone for the weekend, so our department is spread a little thin… where’s the big one? We all know it’s going to happen, we just have to sit and wait for it.

Some rather exciting news for me: I have started driving the Ambulance! I’m pretty psyched about it, even though I would prefer to respond direct with my own truck. It feels good when people give you responsibility, it means they trust you and your judgement. It feels very good.

This afternoon will take me to the Cemetery where we will bury my Great-Aunt Ellen. She passed away from cancer on Tuesday morning. She would be turning one-hundred years old in September. I think she lived a pretty full life. She survived two marriages, both of which her husbands passed away. Can you imagine?

That brings me to my last little ramble… I live in a very small town. I was literally born at the fire station that I’m now working for. I’ve been here my entire life. So, it’s just a matter of time before we get a call to respond to one of my family members for an emergency. I’m not looking forward to that day at all.

{May 17, 2012}   Busy, Busy, Busy

I’ve been on several calls this week:

1. Plane Crash

2. 57 yo Male bleeding from the eyes, nose and mouth

3. Carbon Monoxide (made me sick, ugh)

4. Psycho lady who overdosed on sleeping meds and then proceeded to kick, punch and spit at us.


It’s been a busy week, but I wouldn’t have it any other way 🙂   I’m really enjoying being on the Rescue squad. I’m psyched for whatever comes at us next!

et cetera