{June 20, 2012}   6/19/12


Sarge is adjusting well. He got his first bath here at his new home today. Other than his laziness, which prevented him from standing, he seemed to enjoy the attention he was receiving from two people at once. Now that he’s had a bath, I’m somewhat able to tolerate his scent.

I spent the majority of the morning patching walls so they can be painted before I move back into my parents house. Many of these holes that I have patched were the direct result of my terrible aim when using a hammer. Apparently, there isn’t a single molecule in my body that was meant for carpentry work. Maybe I’m more cut out for being an interior painter and decorator? We’ll soon find out!

Today is my brother Robert’s birthday. I’m excited because I had a professional photographer take pictures of our adorable little niece, Kayla, on one of our firetrucks while she wore my brother’s fire jacket (he’s also a firefighter). We’re taking the best photo and making it poster-sized and having it framed for him. He’s going to love it!



We had a pretty interesting training session for Fire and Rescue the other night. They had me be the patient: pregnant, lost and with a broken tibia and a broken femur. They had me stuff a pillow under my shirt and go get lost in the Town sand pits so they could locate me, splint both of my legs, back-board me and carry me out of the pits and to the waiting ambulance. The guys did a wonderful job with the exercise. Oh yeah… did I mention that I am the only female on the department, so I get to be the patient quite frequently? Hahaha, I love my job!


{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.”


et cetera