other people's emergencies: random thoughts of an urban paramedic

For more than twenty years I've worked as a paramedic for the city of Boston, Massachusetts. The opinions expressed in this diary are mine alone, and do not represent the views of Boston EMS. Names, dates, locations, and physical characteristics have been changed to ensure patient confidentiality.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Hello again!

It's been a long time--four years since I last posted here. A lot has happened since then. I volunteered to deploy with the 82nd Airborne to Iraq. Eight hours before we were due to depart from Fort Benning, I received word that I was being held back due to a medical condition. I went to Walter Reed Army Medical Center, resolved the problem by switching to a different medication, and deployed to Afghanistan for a year with the 101st Airborne.

I needed a change when I came back, so I left Boston EMS. That's right--I no longer work as a paramedic. Sometimes I regret that decision a little bit, because even after 27 years in the same EMS system, there were still times when I still loved that job. I most regretted that change a year ago in April, when my former colleagues responded to the Boston Marathon bombings. Every year between 1991 and 2010 I'd either run the marathon or worked it on overtime, so when the explosions went off, I really felt as if I should have been there. I regret that I wasn't.

As many of you know, I was writing a book that was based on this blog, and after fifteen years of writing and rewriting, it's finally finished. I'm not sure yet whether it will appear in book stores or on Amazon, but one way or the other, look for it soon.

I had a great time posting here. The part I enjoyed most was reading your comments. Some of you could relate to my observations, others thought I complained too much. Either way, I really enjoyed the interaction.

I've deleted all the posts on this website to avoid any potential conflict with the book. Sorry about that. But if nothing else, it'll motivate you to buy the print version. Thanks for reading, and thanks for your interest in EMS. If nothing else, I feel as if I educated some of you about the work of EMTs and paramedics, and that alone made the project worthwhile.


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