Archive | October, 2010

It would have been 4

28 Oct

4 years ago today I got married.  4 years ago I donned a beautiful white dress and walked up the aisle with my Dad.

I was so full of naive confidence.  I was sure that things were going to be good – but I had no clue.

Today I am more confident, more sure in my decision.  My marriage ended because it was never going to succeed. 

I am lucky to have such amazing women in my life to pick me up when I am down – who know and love me. 

Leah and Wendy

Cat and Me

This year has been a year of “firsts”  – first on this side of the great line – BW and AD – Before Wedding and After Divorce.  I have made it – and you know what – I’m really looking forward to seeing what happens in the next years to come.  I have a steady running schedule and plans for the Chicago Marathon.  I have some amazing friends…and a job that pays the bills and a profession that keeps me alive.  Maybe one day they will merge into a career that I am both passionate about AND get paid to do.  But we’ll see.

The point is – I feel much better today about what has happened over the past year than I have in a number of months.  There is a lot of life out there to live. 

And a lot more puppy snuggles to enjoy:

Cuddles Mamma?

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And I’m over it.

26 Oct

I am over the lying and the bullshit and the making me feel like I’m the evil / not understanding / deceiving one. 

I ran into my exboyfriend on Friday night. 

I received 30 emails from the last guy that I was seeing.  The last one (three on the same day) culminated into a crescendo of how much he’d lied to me in the 3 weeks that we were hanging out.  Seriously?  And he’d had the balls to tell me that I was the one who kept things from him. 

W.T.F – over?

Yes, I have standards.  Yes, I have expectations.  But they are not monumentally difficult.  don’t lie to me.  don’t deceive me. But these are the same things that I have with my friends.  It’s a RESPECT thing.

So if you’re a ball-less, lying, whining, manipulative bastard?  Get the f–k out of my life.

I think the Universe is trying to talk to me

20 Oct

About how much I’m doing in my life.  Because this weekend I came down with an epic Upper Respiratory Infection.  I hit the lotto with it – bronchitis, laryngitis and sinusitis. 

So needless to say, I will not be running the Army 10-Miler this weekend.  I can’t walk up a set of stairs without getting winded right now, so running 10 miles seems somewhat suicidal. 

I will, however, be running the Wicked 10K next Saturday, October 30th. 

Right now, I am resigned to sounding like Selma from the Simpsons:

Sexy, huh?

So I think the universe would like me to slow down a little bit.  And it’s been pretty successful.  I spent Monday and Tuesday on the couch watching TV – which resulted in me wanted to tear out the backsplash in the kitchen and install a new tile one AND restain the cabinets. 

Perhaps I’m not listening carefully to the universe. 

Besides – this run just sounds like fun:  Survive Norfolk

It’s not a midlife crisis

18 Oct

But rather me just saying that I had had the same haircut since I was in college.  I thought it was time for a change:

Yes, I chopped of 5+ inches off my hair and dyed it brown.  I like it a great deal more.  And it’s super fast in the morning.  The only thing I don’t like is that I can’t really tie it back for EMS – I can get the crown but it doesn’t stay forever.  Oh well – it’s different, it makes me feel good – and in the end, that’s the most important thing.

Too Much Information is a Bad Thing

13 Oct

I think that Google and the Facebook search engine are evil.  Because temptation is way too great to search for people and find out stuff that hurts your heart.

Case in point – I was random searching on Facebook and I found the woman who my ex husband cheated on me with.  And she has pictures…of the two of them curled up together, dressed up together – at my old house. As recently as this past summer – and on my anniversary last year.

Now I’m not foolish enough to think that he hasn’t been moving on from me – but really – her?  But I guess in a weird way it makes sense, she pursued him when we were married.  And she idolized him – which is exactly what he wants in a woman.  So I guess they’re good for each other.

I guess I’ve learned my lesson – do background checks on potential boyfriends and forget the past.

”Make it a rule of life never to regret and never to look back.  Regret is an appalling waste of energy; you can’t build on it, it’s only for wallowing in.” ~ Katherine Mansfield

What an unusual weekend

12 Oct

So this weekend was far from what I expected.  I had thought that it’d be a kind of quiet, if rescue-heavy, weekend.

Friday night – worked on a surprise for one of my best friends…it’s coming along but far from ready…this week I have to put a lot of effort into finalizing it….and I also had a rough go of realizing that I’m damn near 30 years old and didn’t have anything to do on a Friday night.  It was exacerbated by the fact that my sister and brother-in-law went out…I just felt lonely.

Saturday I went shopping with my Mom during the day and then I completed the All-Access 5K…I was nauseated throughout the race.  Just felt like I was going to vomit (lovely, huh?) but I figure that that was nerves.  I haven’t competed in a race in almost a year. 

Turns out – I finished 10th in my age group.  Yes – I was just as stunned as you.  See – here’s the evidence.  Pretty friggin’ cool, huh?

The other thing that happened was Sunday night.  It was an ‘incident’…ish.  I was supposed to pull 18hrs on the ambulance.  After I finished 12, I went to the other squad where I was told that I wasn’t needed because 2 other members just decided to pick up.  OK – whatever, I’ll go home.  My sister and brother-in-law invited me to join them at the local bar to watch the Phillies on one screen and the Eagles on the other – which made so much more sense than flipping back and forth.

While I was sitting there hanging out and enjoying a Sam Adams Oktoberfest, my ex-husband and the woman that he cheated on me with walked into the bar.  Sounds like the start to a bad joke, doesn’t it?  But nope, it’s my life.

I eventually was the bigger person and went over and  said ‘hi’ and talked for a few minutes…and then I left at halftime.  I went home and cried – not because I missed him, but rather for the loss of the future that I’d planned on – the one that will never be.  And then I got good and upset with myself for having that kind of reaction.  Afterall, he cheated on me before I realized that he wasn’t ready to be married.  We were trying for kids and he was fooling around.

So I made myself a promise – that never again will I get that upset.  I am going to make it through this life better.

End of Life Care

8 Oct

***WARNING:  THIS IS NOT A FUNNY, UPLIFTING OR AMUSING FRIDAY POST***

This is just simply – what’s been on my mind lately. 

What do we do with ‘End of Life’ care?  What do you do when it’s your family?  Now – theoretically at least – I don’t have to have that conversation with my Dad about what he wants or doesn’t want.  We just have to deal with decisions like whether we continue the HRT or instead go over to radiation-only therapy.  We compare side-effects and treatment options and talk about what surgeons want and what radiation requires. 

My brother made the decision to move back to my Dad’s apartment – under the guise of getting a job up there – just so he can take care of my dad.  My dad who can’t really put on his own shoes in the afternoons because his feet have swollen up so much throughout the day.  My strong, impressive and always-active Dad…he can’t get his shoes on.  So my brother helps him. 

As an EMT, I am regularly called to the various nursing homes / assisted living facilities in my area.  Sometimes the calls are completely bogus in nature where the staff just wants the patient moved to the hospital (we see this most regularly on Friday’s, starting about mid-day) because the staff at that particular facility doesn’t want to deal with a potentially difficult patient through the weekend. 

But sometime’s we’re called for legitimate, end-of-life calls.  Respiratory distress, cardiac arrest, pre-code – whatever it is.  Among the many things that happens when all of the firefighters and EMS personnel arrive,  in addition to finding out where the patient is, how old they are and how long have they been ‘down’, is to find out whether or not the patient has a DNR.  DNR = Do Not Recessuitate Order.  So no CPR, no invasive procedures, just ‘comfort’ – assuming the patient hasn’t already passed. 

As an EMT, I believe that a DNR is a wonderful thing.  As the daughter of someone with Stage IV prostate cancer, I think it’s essential.  Please do not misunderstand, I don’t want my dad to die.  Actually – putting those words ‘dad’ and ‘die’ in the same sentence, has me crying at my computer.  I love my Dad and as such, I want him to be comfortable throughout his life.  Comfortable physically, spiritually and emotionally.  To accomplish this, medical professionals – nurses, doctors, technicians – everyone involved in the care cycle must be honest with the patient about the disease, treatment options and expected outcome. 

I’m just an EMT.  I only have 3 years experience on the streets.  I’m not a nurse or a doctor and I certainly don’t have the education to stand up against an RN or a MD.  However, I see people struggling to breathe, exhausted, in pain and their families do not want to let them go.  So we do CPR, we break the bones in the chest with compressions (one of the most nauseating feelings I have ever had was the sound and feel of the sternum and ribs crumbling against my hands as I started CPR), we push the body full of drugs, we place tubes, start lines and jolt the body with electricity.  This is far from the peaceful “hope I go in my sleep” ideal that people talk about their death – if they talk about it at all. 

I believe in palliative care.  I believe that hospice is a beautiful thing.  I believe that life is sacred from the minute of conception to the moment of death.  I will always perform life-saving procedures until provided proof that the patient does not want that.  But I believe that one of the measures of how sacred life is, is shown in chosing to do nothing.  To show respect for  the life that you have led.

When I have walked into a room where a DNR is present, family members are around – they know what is happening or just happened.  They are sad, they are crying but they have reached a sense of peace with it.  They have had a chance to say goodbyes, to let that person go knowing that they expressed their love.  The emotional destruction is not there the way it is when someone has chosen to want all intense and invasive procedures to prolong life. 

For me – if I can’t be ‘me’ – I do not want any ‘heroic measures’.  Just let me go – make me comfortable because I don’t believe death should be painful – but just let me go.  I hope that if the time ever comes to it for my family – especially my dad – that I will have the courage to look past my want, my desire to keep him longer and how much I will miss him, but instead focus on what he wants and what is best for him.  I want him to know he is loved and to show love, it means placing his needs above my own.