Sunday, July 20, 2008
What kind of friend would I be if I did not keep all of my avid readers apprised of every single thing I find to be utter bullshit or a blatant attempt to deceive me?
No friend at all that's what kind. So, even though this does not pertain to emergency medicine or emergency services in any way at all; I still feel the need to vent a little and let all of you single guys out there know about the great many traps I've either fell into, or almost fell into over the last 18 months.
It has only been the last month or so that I have started to notice feeling lonely. With that said I dabbled a bit over the last 18 months, but I really started examining the situation over the last 2 weeks or so. I think I have managed to piece it all back together again in my mind; or whats left of it since medic school. CT would show Swiss cheese, I'm sure.
#1 Never date for the sake of dating. You will only end up miserable WITH someone rather than the preferred "Miserable Alone"
#2 Never suggest to your 2 sons that you haven't dated seriously in over a year and a half.
I woke up to my phone ringing. The female on the end said she saw my oldest son at the supermarket with his mother (my ex of course) he said to her "Mam, your very pretty and not wearing a ring.. My dad hasn't dated seriously in over a year. I'm sure he is lonely" The lady who we will call "Lacie" wanted to call me (after getting my number from MY son) and say it was the sweetest way anyone has ever asked her out. I promptly told her that I had not asked her out. After a few seconds of conversation she obviously thought the guy standing behind my ex and my son was ME... it wasn't. I was laughing too hard when I hung up the phone to call the boy and be stern. I waited until he returned from his mothers house the next day and told him if he were to ever set me up again to offer a picture and then call and warn me. He promptly agreed.
#3 Stay away from online dating sites.
Ya they seem "Fun" and "Harmless" but they are not. I tried out Yahoo's service for about 6 months. They were running some special for 60 bucks or so, I figured I'd spend way more than that in a single night at the bar so why not give it a shot.
The first one I got was amazing. She sent a picture and I sent mine. We talked for hours and hours for the first few weeks on Yahoo Instant Messenger. Then one day she offers her phone number and we start talking on the phone. We had so much in common, we had the same likes and dislikes. We had the same view on politics, children, world events etc... This all carried on for about 3 months. Then we decide to meet. On the day before the meeting she calls me and tells me she has a confession. The picture wasn't her. She is 10 years older than me and 17 years older than she told me she was. She is married and has 3 children. Well I have to admit, I was a little stunned. I had never done the online things before and I thought "Gee, I get the real deal right out of the gate...this is AWESOME" Now I know better.
The next few were pretty bad. A few dates, a few disappointments. I had one that was sort of promising but then I realized that she really didn't care for children. Every time I would mention my boys and the fact that they are with me a lot she would say things like "Well you don't ALWAYS have them do you?" It only took 3 times for it to sink into my thick skull and I never returned any of her phone calls after that. My sons are the biggest part of my life. I love them more than anything, they are my best friends. We are a package deal.
#4 Avoid all MOB agent sites! (Mail Order Brides)
Ya so I was feeling a bit lonely one evening and I decided to myself "Self, if you can't meet the right kind of women here... go abroad!" So I start researching meeting women from different countries. All of the websites pitch a good game but when you start peeking under their skirt (so to speak) you get to the hairy mess of it. 99.5% of them are blatant scams. There is no easy or efficient way to sort out the reputable from the scammers anymore. Some sites have BOTH on their pages according to a few articles I read. I spent the better part of 6 hours reading horror stories of men scammed out of THOUSANDS of dollars in the search for love abroad. It was enough to deter me from ever trying to navigate those narrow streets.
#5 Kill all who offer you a blind date.
The phone rings, it's my buddy Chris. First question out of his mouth. "Dude, your still single right?" I affirm reluctently. "Dude, you have got to help a brother out here.. I have this date tonight but she is shy. She will only go out if her BF can come with us" I asked Chris if he could remember ANY of highschool and why I should be forced to play some stupid ass games with his date prospect and her "BF". I further informed him that I was 35 damn years old and he was 36! "Why are you even considering this" I asked. Well, he sent pictures and like the weak bastard I am... I went.
The lady I was set up with was attractive, 5' 5" about 135lbs and brunette. She was a considerable bit younger than me but I could adapt. I'm 35 not 65. She had a wonderful smile and I was starting to feel a little more at ease about this blind date.... Until she spoke.
"Hi man, I'm.... like..... Amber. Whats your name?" "Oh thats right Shelly told me you like.... are an ambulance driver or sumptin right?"
I felt like asking her if I could answer her first question before I addressed the "ambulance driver" question but then I quickly realized it would be to no avail. I start scanning the room for the exits then a brilliant plan comes to me. I excuse myself to the bathroom, call a buddy and cash in a favor.
I got back to the table and sat down. She was babbling on about some idiot on MTV's "The Real World" and how much she lusted over him. I was smiling and nodding. Trying to bide my time.
***Pager Alert*** (Show pager to Amber)
I'm sorry Amber, there has been an industrial accident. I need to get my team mobilized. We will have to do this again. She smiles and looks at me "Can I go?" I told her I was afraid not and got the hell out of there.
She actually called twice. I was unavailable twice as well.
So here I am. At work, praying for a call to come in so I can occupy my mind a little. I'm sitting up in the office typing this while the other guys are down stairs watching reruns of old movies. Most times being alone doesn't bother me. When my boys are home or when I'm busy I hardly ever think about it..... but sometimes, just sometimes I wish I could remember the scent of a woman's hair, or the way she smiles at you when she likes you, or the way you can just be close and not have to say a word.
Sex once in every 12 months wouldn't kill me either. Given my options and my misadventures I think I'll stick with the bar, at least then you know what your getting...or you at least know what the presentation looks like. I don't need a double cheeseburger from Micky D's every night... but just once in awhile I'd at least like to be able to lick the cheese off the wrapper.
Posted by Zer0 at 6:28 PM
Saturday, July 05, 2008
The call comes in early in the morning around 12:30am to take a elderly female back to the nursing home after treatment at the ER for dyspena.
My partner and I arrive to find a 88 year old female with a GCS of about 4 working hard to breathe on 15 lpm by mask. Rate was about 32, SPO2 91%.
We ask the ER doc what O2 he wants her to go back on as the nursing home can only provide 6 lpm by concentrator. The doc then informs us she is hospice care and hands us a newly minted DNR.
We switch her over to a cannula at 6 lpm per the doc and begin the transport.
She makes it about 10 minutes and codes.
As we arrive at the nursing home I leave my partner in the back so I can run in and talk to the charge nurse and try to explain the situation. The charge was just as confused as I was. I guess what we were both wondering is why the ER didn't put her on the cannula and let the dying process happen there?
There are specific protocols for letting a patient die in the ER and there are also protocols for letting them die in a nursing facility under the care of hospice. There are NO DEFINED protocols for allowing them to die in the squad.
It all was very alien to me. My mind knew I had to follow the direction of medical control but my soul was screaming to do something... ANYTHING!
We knew she was going to go. I just didn't want her to go without her family around. I had offered to let them ride in the squad but they chose not to for one reason or another.
I feel sad.
Rest in Peace.
Posted by Zer0 at 10:44 PM
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
I'm still settling into this whole "Paramedic" thing. Trying to find my place in the grand scheme of things. I have made a few very painful realizations over the last few weeks. I'll share a few with you.
#1 Your never as smart as you think you are.
You might have gotten perfect grades in school and you could have been a damn good basic or intermediate but thats no indication of how you will be as a paramedic. You see, you have always been able to secretly think "I'm not the medic, it's not my final decision" When you get that medic card guess what? Yep.. it is your final decision and that scares the bejubus out of you. Take a few deep breaths and let your training and field experience kick in. It's likely you know the solution, you just need to give yourself time to access it.
#2 It's 50/50 now buddy!
I used to get such a kick out of screwing with my medic partners on BLS runs. We would go to a nursing facility for a seemingly routine transport and of course I would be expected to take it since the medic was normally in the back. I would get in and ask a question like "Good afternoon Mam, do you feel like you have any difficulty breathing?" 95% of them would say something to the affirmative and WHAMO.. I would call my partner to take the patient, they are the medic! After getting my card most of the medics I work with now are quick to remind me that it's all 50/50 now unless they feel like getting even for my past shenanigans and stick me with all of them.
#3 Even if it hasn't happened in 10 years, it will now.
Since I have recieved my card I have observed some crazy runs. Stuff you only see once every 5-6 years. Yep, I got the majority of it in my first week. I think it ranked about a 8 on the pucker factor when I was in the back with my first AAA. Prepare for the worst, it's coming.
All of that and the lingering thought that I should probably start dating again at some point. I mean, I'm ok with being single and all but every once in awhile I would like to have some sort of female companionship. No, it's not about sex (although that would be cool too) it more just about the connection to a female that allures me. Plus, women are soft and smell nice. The problem is, I have no idea where to start! I have been so self absorbed for the past 3 years I have kind of lost touch with all the things I SHOULD be doing to put me on the right track to romance. Plus the fact that romance in it's self bores the shit out of me. I prefer REAL conversation with rational people, all the romantic drivel just seems to mask what people are truly thinking.
So I post a couple personals on a couple obscure sites (I shy away from the popular ones) and I get half a dozen or so replies and I notice a trend of BIG women. I have to sit and ask myself "Self, are you only capable of attracting women at 190+ lbs? or is it that those are the only women looking at the personal ads. I certainly hope the latter is true or I'll be single forever. I know I'm a bigger guy, but I'm not obese. I do tend to gravitate toward smaller women but I have nothing against ones with a little meat on their bones either.
So ya, all in all... I'm FRUSTRATED.
Posted by Zer0 at 7:39 PM