Home From War.

When I quit the ambulance, I felt like I had returned to civilian life.

I felt like I had been at war.

Everyone thinks warfare is something that doesn’t happen here…in the United States…despite the watered down tales of terror shared by the news.

I always found the news so trivial.  For the most part I stopped watching it-I would spend my nights in a warzone and News was more traffic, weather, and falls latest fashion trends, when there were actual, legitmate, important narrartives playing out and nobody was being warned.  I stopped watching TV but for background noise several years into EMS.  The majority of television was fire, police and emergency rooms would frustrate me more than entertain me – the real thing was more exciting.

But when my husband became violent, I started losing my resilience.  The calls were starting to collect on my shoulders in a way I couldn’t shake off.  I saw violence at work, from drownings and fully burned bodies to blown off heads and violent rapes.  I saw things behind thousands of closed.  I don’t know how many people’s hands I held as they died…And violence had infiltrated everything, even my home, there was no reprieve.  Suddenly I was more aware of how I couldn’t keep anything safe.  I couldn’t even keep my dog safe.

The call that broke me happened October 30th 2012, six months before I finally walked into the office in tears.  “I can’t do it anymore.”  I said.

I couldn’t.  I was done.

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