“I didn’t become a Paramedic to get a front row seat to other people’s tragedies. I did it because I knew the world was bleeding and so was I, and somewhere inside I knew the only way to stop my own bleeding was to learn how to stop someone else’s.”
– Daniel José Older, E.M.T.
Sometimes it’s best to write it down, to simply get it out of your head. Sometimes it makes a lot more sense once you see it for yourself, in black & white.
🚑💨 – THE EMS LIFE, Part I : In The Thick Of It.
I have held children newly born, as well as, dying or lifeless in my arms. I have held hands with the lonely, the scared, and the brave. I have watched as vehicles have taken away lives too soon and torn families apart. I have stood beside and behind my “brothers” and “sisters” as we’ve worked together to save our patients and, sometimes, even ourselves. I have seen what hate does with its bullets, fists, and blades. I have watched as those too sad have taken their own lives, as well as, borne witness to many a “last kiss”. I have seen endless people, young and old, struggle with medical issues – predisposed and self-imposed. I have watched as the grips of drugs have killed the innocent…and the guilty. I have had to tell people that their loved ones will never come back and watch their tears as I carry the body away. I have been cursed at, spit on and, multiple times, attacked. I have laughed with many and cried with more. I have been able to save many, but have had to “pronounce” many more. No matter what we do, it will never be enough. I have seen into the eyes of angels and of demons so, the next time you look into my own eyes and wonder, just remember that I have seen things that only some can handle and done things that even fewer can deal with.
I am a Paramedic. I am here to help.
🚑💨 – The EMS Life, Part II : Breaking Free.
Except… I’m not that girl anymore.
Maybe I never really was?
Perhaps I got so caught up in saving “the world” simply because I had no idea how to save myself?
But life goes on and time changes everything.
My vision is clearer now and I can plainly see – that girl in steel toed boots and blues is not who I’m meant to be.
“Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do, until you are able to do what you want to do.”
– Kurt Warner
I used to run to those who needed saved – now I walk amongst those who choose to save themselves.
I entered my “inactive” phase 2 & 1/2 years ago, after 17 years straight of fulltime service… but TODAY marks the official end of my “E.M.S. Life”.
It’s been quite a ride and I am grateful for every moment, every memory, every friendship and every lesson learned along the way… but I’ve moved on now, and I have no interest in ever going back. This is most certainly the end of my E.M.S. career. PA Paramedic #203543 has now, officially, expired.