October 18, 2009

hitting home

In my time away I've been real busy with school and clinicals. This weekend I put in 24 hrs of ride time, got 8 calls which isn't bad at all considering 20 hours of 104 of ride time so far were spent holding down the recliners at the station.

This weekend was just weird. Lots of weird calls, lots of weird outcomes, just weird. There is no other way to describe it. Today we had a call that really hit home with me. I had been in her shoes a couple times before and it's like a switch was flipped. Normally I kinda keep low key with the patients and their families as the medics I ride with take over that part, I just basically start the assessments and get histories from them. I talk to them during the transport, I try to calm them down, and sometimes just lend a hand to hold. The medic in the back takes the jump seat (which is behind the patients head for the non EMS folk) and I'm usually on the bench or the CPR seat which are on the sides of the ambulance. I'm fairly inexperienced as an EMT having gone straight from EMT school to paramedic school without working in the field but today with this one patient I felt like I'd been doing this for years.

I talked to her, I told her my experiences, what to expect, how things work, how to stay safe, how to get a fresh start, and most of all how to escape. She was terrified and her vitals showed it. I sat by her side the entire way to the hospital, totally forgot there was a medic in back with us, just talked to her, hopefully helped to ease her fears of the whirlwind that is about to come in the next few days. I didn't do much for her medically other than take her vitals and give her some ice but by the time we got to the hospital her vitals fell into the normal range and she was more at ease about what's to come. Got her transferred to the ED staff and I wished her good luck and gave her a hug, I hope she follows through on everything and gets a fresh start. We're only with our patients for a short time, hardly enough to make a difference, I can only wish that my story gave her some hope. I really do wish her all the best.


  1. You know... What you did for her, it might have made all the difference.

    I've been there. It's a terrifying place to be. Having someone identify with you, and not judge you, just listen...

    I dont know what to say. She'll be in my thoughts and prayers.

    Thank you, Audrey, for doing what you do.

  2. By the way, and I don't know how it's possible that I missed you, but you've been added to my blogroll.

    I hope you don't mind.

  3. I'm sitting at my computer trying not to cry at this story. Thank you so much for sharing it. How providential that you could be there for this particular person.


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