EMS & PTSD: Behind the Mask – A Blog by Tales From The Boo Boo Bus – The Blood

The responses that we have gotten via comments here, and messages and comments on the Facebook page, Tales From The Boo Boo Bus, have been incredible. Exhausting, exhilarating, and enlightening. This endeavor of ours carries much greater weight with it than we realized. We've received hundreds of views on the last blog, and many likes and some shares. So many of us fighting the same war. It's amazing, but the weight is heavy on our shoulders. We will try not to let all of you down. -Doc Reaper and Bandage-one THE MESSAGE: Story "GET UP!" I scream at the lifeless body on the ground. "GET UP! PLEASE GET UP! GET UP!!!!" I sit up violently in my bed. What the hell? Where did he go? He was just right here! Looking around, around I realize that it must have been a nightmare. Again. My husband wakes partially, looks at me like I'm crazy, and rolls over. I scoot away from him, to the other side of the bed, so that my nervous shaking won't bother him. I want to be held, but he has to get up for work soon, and it's my day off. One of us needs to get some sleep. Don't get me wrong, I love my husband very much. He is wonderful, but I don't share this part of me with him that much. I used to but the pain it caused him-hearing about the incidents and watching my restless sleep took a toll on him. So I hide it or talk to my Counselor instead and spare him my pain. He is not involved in EMS and cannot fathom many things...he's blessed. As I lay there trembling, with sweat quickly cooling my body, I lose myself in thought; replaying that night in my head... In reality I never screamed at that lifeless body to get up. I was screaming in my head. But I turned away from the body, broken and laying mangled up on the ground and worked on my other patient. One of three-no-two now. He's spurting blood out of the inguinal area. I'm by myself. I stumbled across the accident on my way home from drill. "This uniform is ruined now." I think to myself. Sometimes the shit we think when we are in the thick of things is unreal! I drive my knee down as hard as I can into the wound to stem the blood loss, and rip through my aid bag to find rolls of gauze. I pack it full of 3 huge rolls of Kerlex and drive my knee back on top of it. My patient is out cold. Weak carotid. Rapid and shallow respirations. I check him over for any other injuries, and can find none. "Where in the actual FUCK is that ambulance!!!?" I yell into my phone. The dispatcher says they are still 15 minutes out. "He's going to be DEAD by then,  do you hear me!? DEAD!" "I'm sorry ma'am, just hold on, we are sending help as quickly as possible." My other patient starts moaning from the front passenger seat. But I'm stuck. I can't do anything, because the second I move I can just go ahead and declare Time of Death. I talk to him from my position in the back seat and tell him to hold still and everything will be OK. He has a head injury with CSF and blood coming out of his ears. Everything is NOT going to be OK. He mumbles and tries to move. I scramble for a C-Collar out of my bag and 3" tape. I apply the C-Collar from my position and tape his head to the back of the seat. That's the best I can do... There is still blood seeping out from inguinal wound. "How the fuck, did you get the inguinal artery in the first damn place!?" I look around, searching for the MOI. There's shit EVERYWHERE. Must have been some glass I guess. He's lost about 1.5 liters of blood at the very least. I smell and taste it in my mouth. It's nauseating. Massive amounts of blood always nauseate me. The smell lingers in my nostrils for days. Blood is sticky like that. I decide to try my best and start a line on this guy. Probably impossible to do, while effectively maintaining pressure, but I'll give it a shot. I gather my supplies, but I just can't reach. He has shit for veins, and in order to reach his Jugular I'll have to lean too far forwards. I try blind sticks in his ACs. Miss them, he's too constricted. Prayer is all I have left. "God PLEASE PLEASE send that unit here faster. Please help me save him. Don't let him die Lord." I pull out his billfold and look at the picture. Two little kids and his wife, all four of them smiling brightly. "Please Lord, his family needs him!" Sirens. I hear sirens! The most beautiful noise! Music in its truest form. The medics run up and I give them a run down. They look at me like I'm fucking insane. I'm covered in blood. It's all over my uniform. And I definitely did some shit that we don't really do civilian side. Like not wearing gloves. I look down at my hands. Bare, and covered with blood. I never had time to think about it. Oh well. That would have been 15 more seconds my patient would have been bleeding out. It was worth the risk. bloody_hands The patients are boarded and whisked away. Police and Fire are still on scene, they pulled up with the ambulance, throwing the chaos into more chaos. I'm in a daze. I walk over to the body. I pull out his wallet. I know I'm going to regret it but I just have to...I open it and see the photo of the most innocent child smiling back at me. I drop to my knees and start to cry. "Please get up. Don't let this be real, Lord. Please just let him get up." But he never does. A firefighter approaches and lays his hand on my shoulder. Stands with me for several minutes. Until I find the strength to stand back up and walk away. 25 minutes of Hell. And I have to dream about that shit. Over and over and over. Five years later, and I'm haunted still. I did my best. There's nothing I could have done differently or better. But those three faces won't leave me alone. I have no clue if the two lived or died. I'd like to think that the knowledge would help. But I doubt it would. Insert intellectually stimulating/moral boosting message here that I can't even fake for you. -Doc Reaper

This Post Has Been Viewed 697 Times

Check Also

Diabetes death 911 – Wisc.

This Post Has Been Viewed 411 Times

One comment

  1. Doc there is nothing anyone can say that will stop the nightmares, cold sweats, etc. Your husband (ex) will never understand just like mine never did. It is times like those that you need to reach out to your brothers, sisters and battles. I don’t know you…but I do. We are strangers yet sisters. Reach out if you need me 24/7/365. -~~Mama Doc

Leave a Reply