Monday, May 30, 2011

Giving Bad News Really Sucks

I was a Lt. on our Rescue Squad and I still remember having to tell a family member "I'm sorry, there is nothing more we can do at this point". Whether it was an elderly person that we had administered C.P.R. to or a loved one killed in a MVA, it was never easy. Then there were calls that involved members of our own Department. The Capt. of the Squad's son was killed in a motorcycle crash and trying to keep her away from the scene was a very difficult, if not impossible, thing to do. It even happened to me. My brother was driving home one night and slid off the road and ended up upside down in a small creek. Upon arriving on the scene, I immediately recognized the car and I was held back by fellow Firefighters and EMS members. When the “thumbs up” was given I finally was allowed to see him. Luckily he only suffered a broken nose and bumps and bruises. Even though at the time, wearing a seat belt had not been hammered into our heads by TV, radio or print ads, he was. I was a believer after one month in the FD after seeing the carnage of people being ejected, crushed or having to be cut out with the Jaws of Life. From that day on I always buckled up and also made my passengers.

Today I will be making the hardest phone call in my life. I am going to tell my Mom I have cancer. You are probably saying "Wait a minute, you were diagnosed in November and have been going through chemo, why now?" Let me explain. My Dad died a little over two years ago from cancer and it has taken my Mom till now to where I think she can handle the news (I hope and pray). At the beginning I also had a blood clot in my right leg so I was able to play it of with that. Also in talking to my Brother and my Aunt, (who is almost like a sister), we all thought it was for the best. Mom was still grieving the loss of my Dad and we felt that the news would push her over the edge. Honestly, I am scared shitless. I know she is going to be pissed off that she is just now finding out. But after getting positive news about my lymph nodes getting smaller and seeing my brother and his wife after they came for a quick visit, it's time. They have seen me, I am not dying and they can also help explain my situation. Yes, I have lost a lot of weight going from a 38" waist to now a 32. Like I mentioned it is not due to the chemo but changing my eating habits and exercising. O.k. is 08:30 here in Texas and 09:30 in Florida; I am making the call, wish me luck. I will be back to let you know how it all turns out.

Well, that did not go as bad as it could have. I believe she now understands our concerns and now knows that I will keep her completely informed. What a relief and I am glad that is over.

On another note, today is Memorial Day and I would like to thank all that served and also those that we have lost due to their service in the Military. Thank You. I would also like to include Firefighters, Police and EMS...Thank You...Take Care, Be Safe and Never Forget

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