I’m back at work today on the ambulance after four days working the desk job, reading run forms, working on education presentations, and entering trauma data. There are good and bad things about each job. Here’s a brief run down.
The Good – I can sleep until 7 in the morning. I don’t have to worry about getting shit on my boots, vomit and blood on my pants or MRSA filled phlegm on my gloved hands. I get paid to read research studies. The biggest thing I have to lift is my laptop or a package of copy paper. I have met many intelligent, interesting people. They have an awesome lunchtime cafeteria where I work. I get to see a more global picture of EMS and my mind fills constantly with new insights and ways to make things better. If I work twenty years, I will get a nice pension. (19 years and six months to go).
The Bad – I have to critique other paramedics based on calls I have not been on. While I understand this is a necessary part of my job, I am still uncomfortable with it. As in any desk job/office environment I have to be mindful of proper etiquette and chains of authority. Not that I violate these, just that it takes much effort to remind myself of them and keep my actions guided by them. I cannot always belch when I wish to belch. Some projects seem to take forever and are dependent on other people. The data entry can be tedious. I have no patient contact.
Street medic Job:
I have to get up at 5 in the morning. I have to scrub my hands all day long. After some calls I still smell the patient. I hate the sound of lights and sirens and I hate putting my life in the hands of another driver. I have to wait in the triage line. My 401K retirement plan is in the toilet. Carrydowns.
Every call is a new experience. Every day a new day. I am in charge of the scene. I still love the adrenaline rush of a challenging call. Each call is a complete episode. I have a choice of any restaurant or market in town to eat at. I meet lots of interesting people and have great stories to tell. It’s the best job I’ve ever had. I feel like a good guy. I get to take care of people.