Saturday, September 15, 2007

Rainy Day Reflections

As a 911 emergency medical dispatcher, my job is pretty varied and different most of the time as far as emergencies go - everything from difficulty breathing to chest pain to falls to not being able to get out of bed at all. Anytime 911 rings I have no idea what I'm going to hear when I answer it. I guess it makes my job interesting for the most part.

However, my job isn't just 911 emergency calls, as a commercial ambulance dispatcher a lot of my job involves what we call "routine transfers" also. These are the calls that are scheduled ahead of time and they can be trips from a skilled nursing facility to a doctor's office or hospital for an appointment, transfers from one hospital to another for a higher level of care, transfers to psych facilities and drug rehabs, transfers from a private home to a skilled nursing facility, trips to dialysis from either private homes or nursing homes, etc., etc. Prior to working at my current job I had no clue that there were so many people going to so many appointments that required either an ambulance or wheelchair van for transportation. It really was an eye-opener as to the state of people's health in this country.

It's actually rather sad that we have regular patients that we transport just about every single day to one appointment or another and most days as I look at the spreadsheet in front of me and see the same names that I saw the day before and the day before that and even the day before that, I can't help but hope that my life doesn't turn out the same way. Everyone always talks about how wonderful it is to reach retirement age and finally be able to enjoy life but there are a lot more people out there who aren't enjoying their retirement age than one might believe.

I'm sure that the people we transport regularly never thought their lives were going to end up that way either but it just goes to show that with life you just never know what turn it's going to take. Just some sobering thoughts for a rainy Saturday ...


  1. FINALLY! Boy, trying to log into blogger comments sometimes is quite the chore! Took me 7 tries (I think that's what the count ended up as) today to finally get it to cooperate and open for me.
    Now - to my lovely comment - the term "Golden Years" as it is frequently applied to those of us who are senior citizens is a bit of a misnomer. Considering the fact it seems only to apply accurately to doctors, drug companies, hospitals, and the like, ya know.

  2. Your blog is hard for me to comment on as well and I have been reading it for a while so I have not really been just lurking. What you do is right click on your comment link and click on open and voila it opened. I turned the big 6o this year and the golden years are lurking and I hope I have not waited to long to get in shape. The Doctor scared me last visit so I have lost about 20 pounds so far. I don't want to make Dr appts in your ambulance!

  3. what's sad is thinking who's paying for that ambulance every time the person goes to the MD.

    Thank you for this spiritual and uplifting, warm, fuzzy, feel-good post!

    You are a ray of sunshine on a rainy day.

  4. Blogger ate my comment!

    What I said was...I'm glad my folks are in good shape to fly to the midwest, pick up the motor home they just purchased, and drive it back west over the last two weeks.

    And I'm happy that they will be able to enjoy that motor home during what looks to be the travel part of their retirement.

  5. Anonymous5:45 PM EDT

    Ugggg, I was a 911 dispatcher for 12 years before I couldn't take anymore. From the heart wrenching calls with my child isn't breathing to the stupid whats the number to Walgreens. I give you credit for doing it.

  6. I don't seem to have any problems login in here, loading or commenting, thank goodness! You certainly have given us food for thought with this post, thanks x

  7. It's oh so true, Linda. We never know when sickness or disability will strike any of us. Hopefully not, but who knows?

  8. Anonymous5:43 AM EDT

    Sometimes, we have to pause from our daily work and reflect what we have done greatly whether it is small or big, what matters most is that we make a difference to someone's life.


Thanks for visiting!