Friday, January 30, 2009


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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

On Learning...

I had an instructor who once said that you can learn something from everyone that you come in contact, no matter for how long. I kinda took that to heart and now try to apply it to my work as well. I tell my students the same thing. Every patient that you come into contact with, you can learn a little something if you want to.

Even if it's just a routine doctor's office visit or a dialysis run, you can learn. If not from the person, due to being in a comatose state, then their chart and medical information. I always try to keep this in mind as I go about my job. I think it helps.

The other night we got dispatched for a psych transfer. The address was all too familiar. It was Joe again. Joe is a mentally and physically handicapped, 25 year old who is also deaf. He lives with his mother and grandparents. We go out to their house at least once a month when Joe decides to get angry and either hit one of his caretakers or throw stuff around. Tonight was no different.

You really can't blame the guy. He has the mental capacity of a 6-8 year old. Like any kid with that mentality, he pitches a fit once in a while. The problem is that he is exceptionally strong. I've seen him toss around 2 deputies from his wheelchair when he really gets going.

When we got there the cops had him handcuffed and everyone was sweating. After a while Joe calmed down and stated that he wanted to go to the hospital, so they took the cuffs off. His case worker was there and she basically told him that he was going away for a while, it wasn't going to be just an overnight thing. He seemed to understand and was OK with it. He went about packing his things.

We got him into the truck and I climbed in after him. Knowing how he is, I tried to keep him calm and in a good mood. It seemed to work. For some reason, even though I didn't know how to use sign language, he kinda took to me. He showed me his comic collection that he had brought along and through simple gestures and writing, he told me about the video games he liked. He even taught me a little sign language. I really enjoyed the ride with him.

We got him to the hospital without a problem and got him into his room. He promised to be good to the staff and we left. My partner was just kinda looking at me on the way back. I asked her why. She said that she had never seen anyone be that way with him before. Most people just stay away from him and leave him alone for fear of provoking an attack. I told her that wasn't the way I do things. After all, he is just a big kid.


Friday, January 2, 2009


I left for work this morning a bit early. So I could take my time. You see, this morning we got our first taste of winter weather. It was sleeting a bit when I left, it was really putting it down by the time I got to the station. Usually it takes me about 20 minutes to get to work, this morning it was more like 35-40.

Does this seem complicated? I watched the weather the night before and saw that there was a good chance of bad weather coming in. So I got up and got ready early. Then I left for work early. So I wouldn't have to rush, and so I could go slower and be more careful.

Now I know that many people may not have a TV, or watch the weather if they do. But when you get into your vehicle and there is white stuff falling from the sky and there is a whole bunch of this white stuff covering the ground and roads, is it that much of a stretch to begin to think that it may be a slightly dangerous situation?

Apparently not around here. The really dangerous situation is when you get this white stuff falling from the sky and a human with a 4-wheel drive vehicle and open road in front of them. There were a lot of said people out this morning. We had 7 in 30 minutes just in my area. I have no idea what the total for the county was, but it was a lot.

People don't seem to realize that, on ice, it doesn't make a difference what type of vehicle you have. To prove this fact, I was once on a military base during the winter. I saw a full sized tank driving along on a cement pad outside of the motor pool. It hit the ice and went sideways and there was nothing the driver could do about it. So if a tank slides on ice, what makes u think your shiny new 4x4 is gonna just drive right on through?

Luck was with us and everyone else today though. I can't imagine what the monetary cost was for all the damage done, but as far as I know no one was seriously hurt. The other lucky thing was that the schools are still out for Christmas break. I can only imagine what it would have been like with all the kids on the roads this morning.