Our jobs don’t stop for Holidays. The 911 phones keep ringing and facilities keep calling. For a number of years, I always worked the holidays. I come from a family of EMS professionals who were always very understanding, and willing to float a holiday to a day or two after Christmas or Thanksgiving, admittedly also for my own personal gain (holiday pay) but the knowledge that I let someone have some time with their kids was always equally rewarding.
This month, I felt the need to throw my hat into the Ring for my friend Leanne’s topic for The Handover, an EMS Blog Carnival. Leanne writes a terrific blog over at Just My Blog, and was the 2010 recipient of the Bob Nixon Scholarship for EMS Expo. This month, she’s asking for everyone’s funniest EMS Holiday moment. While my story might not be that funny knee slapper, it was a moment that really put a smile on my face.
My partner and I were finishing up our overnight shift from December 23rd into Christmas Eve. We were going to be off for eight hours and then start another sixteen hour shift into Christmas Day. Early in the morning, shortly before we were supposed to go home, we were dispatched to the “Unresponsive Male.” When we arrived, we found a girl who had brought her new boyfriend home with her from college for Christmas with the family. He was in bed, and she couldn’t wake him up.
We could tell what was wrong with this kid simply by looking at him. He was diaphoretic, and would not wake up no matter what we did. The Sugar check confirmed our suspicions: He was Hypoglycemic. I went to work on the line, and my partner loaded up the D50. Within ten minutes of our arrival, our patient was up and talking to us. They had gotten in late the night before, and he had taken his insulin before dozing off, and didn’t have dinner. We asked his girlfriend’s mother to make some breakfast for him, and I gave him a stern lecture while my partner got on the horn to Medical Control to get permission to release this guy. It was the holidays. I’m sure he didn’t want to spend it in the hospital.
MedCon gave us the okay, and we pulled his IV, just as we heard the shout from downstairs: “Breakfast is ready!” The three of us went down to the kitchen to find three plates of food on the table. I pulled out a refusal form and said, “Well, we just need to get a signature and we start packing up to get out of your folks hair, and let you enjoy your breakfast.”
“I don’t think so,” the girlfriend’s mother said, “These other two plates are for you! Thanks for taking time away from your families to be here for us.”
What could we say? My partner and I just smiled, sat down, and enjoyed our bacon and eggs before we headed back out to finish our shift.
Happy Holidays, everyone, and thank you for everything that you do.