Today has been….interesting. I’ve recently started as a freelance reporter in my small town where “nothing happens”. The last two weeks I have been running, and in fact submitted have submitted 4-5 articles for publication per week. Today has been spent mainly in front of the computer writing, so figured I would give an update here.
I am not complaining about the being busy. I’m just highlighting the fact that if you look, you can always find something going on. I have actually surprised my editor about the number of articles I have been submitting. To be honest I have kind of surprised myself as well, as prior to doing this, I “knew” that there was stuff going on, but until being in a position to chase it down and report on it, I just didn’t realize the scope of things that do happen in my small rural Alberta town.
This is a community I am happy to be part of though, and I am honored to be chronicling it for future generations.
Between this blog and the writing for the paper, I have definitely fallen into a groove of writing. It helps me process. It gives me something to focus on outside of myself. It challenges me and pushes me outside of my comfort zone.
As scary as that can be, that is a good thing. People are not designed to live a stress free life. we are quite simply not wired for it. We need a certain amount of stress to function, and I am finding the stress of writing to be completely different from the stress of dealing with traumatic emergencies on the ambulance. Different kinds of stress.
I miss working on the ambulance. I miss the teamwork, I miss the patients. I don’t miss the crappy calls, or the 3am call out for either complete ridiculousness, or complete chaos. I even miss the adrenaline rush of the tones dropping, even if the thought of going on a call still makes me feel sick to my stomach, thanks to the Post Traumatic Stress.
I am starting to realize that there is life beyond EMS. I couldn’t find it for a long time, but it was there, and I am now filling a role in my community that has been sorely needed for way too long. The sense of purpose again does do wonders for one’s self esteem.
That isn’t to say that life is all sunshine and unicorns. My moods still fluctuate more than the average person’s do, though the range is narrowing. I still can’t stand the sound of sirens in real life, and on TV is iffy. I still urge to self harm when I get stressed, even though I am at almost 2 and a half years self harm free. I still get flashbacks from my time on the bus. I still question why I am here at times. Question why I survived my suicide attempts when so many others have not. Question why I carry these demons of multiple mental health issues inside my mind.
I find looking into the future to still be daunting, although it is not quite as dark as it once seemed. Somehow I am keeping my head above water, although it feels like a fight everyday.