More material for my book. "A Paramedic's Journey"
Eulogy for a Paramedic
The world measures success in many ways. Some measure it by the wealth that a person accumulates over their lifetime. Many of them go out into the world with a hunger for position and power. There are also people who work in emergency services who are there only for the thrill that the job brings. They are addicted to the lights, sirens and being in the limelight, they usually don't last very long. Then there is the medic of the heart.
The medic of the heart is one that can't imagine doing anything else. They know that for whatever reason they were called to do this. They get up in the morning happy to be going to work. They go with the knowledge that each day will be different, they may see tragedy and they may see how cruel and uncaring some people are. One minute they are doing chores at the base and the next minute they're in route to a five car pileup on the highway. They walk through the blood of others and do the job that many people can't. They endure the pain they see in family's faces when they have to use the words I'm sorry there's nothing we can do. They hold their breath and pray for God's help when they see someone running towards them with a lifeless baby in their arms. They say that no one will ever die in the back of their ambulance, but see it happen many times over. They just hope that they died knowing that they were with someone who cared.
The medic of the heart cherishes all the smiles, the bright eyes and the touch of the hand from all of those who were grateful because you were there. You go a long long time without hearing a thank you, but that's not what you're there for. One EMS moto says it all, "That Others may Live". Your there not only for the tragedies, but your there for the new mother who worries over her baby who cries so much, your there for a teenager who's afraid because they just wrecked dad's car, Your there for the little old lady who just needs someone to hold her hand and listen to what she's saying. You are there for you, because these patients give more to you than you give to them.
As the years pass some of your brothers and sisters have been smarter than you, and gone on to other careers. Many of them are the nurses, physician assistants, and even doctors you work with. Not you! For reasons you can not explain yourself, you go back day after day unknowing what it will bring. Is this the day you face the nightmare of every medic, and arrive at the scene to find out that its your mother, father, or child. The years pass until you become too old or disabled and can no longer serve.
Your head knows it's over but your heart still hears the call. A distant siren pulls at you and leaves you feeling empty because its a call that you can not answer. You remember a time when you saw God work miracles using your hands to save the life of a child. You remember when a stranger walked up to you and said, "You are the one who saved my mother's life".
Although it has been years since I took my last call I'm still a Paramedic, its too much a part of what I am to say its not so. Withered with age as my life signs slow, I take my last ambulance ride, wouldn't it be fitting if this was where I died.
Eulogy of a Paramedic is my eulogy, and the eulogy of all the medics who have gone before me and of all those who will follow. When we reach heaven we will stand hand and hand. No more trouble, no more pain, and no more calls to be answered. Standing in Gods light knowing we lived by the code, "To do no harm".