7 ways EMS changes you
For some, EMS has exposed them to the best and worst elements of humanity
The experiences EMS providers encounter is unlike any other profession.
Sometimes, you can be on cloud nine after bringing back a cardiac arrest patient. Other times, you're the person that hears a dying patient's last words or breath.
We asked our fans on Facebook how EMS has changed them. Here are some of their responses.
If you haven't already, be sure to add your thoughts in the comments below.
1. The good, the bad and the downright heartbreaking
Suzie O'Brien: "EMS showed me a reality I had yet to experience. The good, the bad and the downright heartbreaking. I started in EMS fresh out of high school; I've done most of my "growing up" there. At first, I thought I was going to save the world, but reality quickly slapped me in the face. Over the years, I learned all we can do is give it our best shot; life is out of our hands. Sometimes we only delay the inevitable. I learned to find my voice and not take any crap. I learned to hide my emotions well and carry on through the bad times. EMS changes a person in ways they don't expect, sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. Either way, it's a learning experience like no other. Whether you are doing CPR, a major trauma, or holding an elderly person's hand to comfort them. I, personally, will never forget the many life lessons I had to endure. Most of all, I take nothing for granted.
2. The faces, the stories, the hugs and tears
Jill Hoogerhyde: "I feel a special kind of privilege to do hospice transports. I have experienced a wide breadth of types of calls but the young patient with days to live who wants to just lie on the gurney in the rain for a few minutes will stick with me always. The faces, the stories, the hugs and the tears have changed me forever — in a very positive way."
3. Put your days off to healthy uses
Jessica Gilham: "First, I've definitely learned that health concerns certainly don't fit a mold or present the same in everybody. Second, I've learned to truly value my days off and to put them to healthy uses."
4. Constant challenge, push to develop and gain new skills
Judah Kreinbrook: "It's exposed me to some of the best and worst moments of humanity. Few professions allow someone to show up at someone's home at the times that we do. The constant challenge is something that has pushed me to develop and gain new interpersonal and hands-on skills. I really don't know where I would be without this as a career to push me because I can be lazy without a challenge."
5. Becoming more aware, independent
Angel Norton: "You definitely have to love this profession to stay in it. It's made me more aware, independent, outspoken and assertive. On the flip side, I miss regular sleep schedules, a social life and I am now single but doing great. I really do love my job as a firefighter-paramedic."
6. The power of compassion
Missy Beth: "EMS has showed me the power of compassion and reward in helping others. This profession has inspired me to leave my high profile job to help others. We don't do it for the money."
7. The opportunity to teach
Brian Fox: "I wouldn't say they are unlike any other profession. For me, I need to be challenged and I loved the challenges that many would call stressful. I can be kind of lazy. I did get to meet a lot of interesting people. Being a medic allowed me to do things and go many places the average person couldn't. I enjoyed sharing my knowledge; it gave me the opportunity to teach. When I started I was a volunteer so I got to learn how to run a business."