We interrupt this FBI Report for a Random Question from Edie at Rich Gifts. Our report will continue after this post, but for now, we are handing the post back toMyADHDMe.
"Thank you gentlemen. Hi everyone, it's nice to be back."
Edie's Random Question:
"What specific qualities did God implant in you when He designed you? Things that you do well. Talents, skills, passions etc. Things you could spend hours doing without feeling the time pass."
That's easy for me to answer. Most people might think it would be ability to make people laugh. But that isn't it. Actually, as I think I mentioned once before, if I had to make people laugh or say something "On Demand" it would never happen. My humor is, well, random....bet you never ever would have guessed that. And many things that I think are hilarious, many people just stare at with blank eyes. You know the kind of people I'm talking about....the normal ones.
I think God designed me to help people during times of crisis. Not the little everyday problems. I'm talking about the big, this could change your life, matter or life and death problems. That is why I adore being a firefighter. When that alarm goes off, something happens to me. I change from this random,ADHD , mind off in Never-Never land to "someone on a mission". That is one of the only times in my life where I can focus. There is a job to do and I can do it. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying it doesn't give me a rush of adrenalin. It's that rush that allows us to "go in" when everyone else is running out.
Many people say it is bravery. Maybe it is a little bit but that really isn't what it is all about. What it is, is that feeling of making a difference. Someone in my community, my neighbor, my friend, even my family,... ANYONE.... is depending on me to help them.
We are taught to protect 3 things, in this order....1. Human Life. 2. Property (house, car, etc) 3. Environment. Some people may argue that environment should be before property but if your house was on fire and we said that we needed to hold back and conserve water...well, you get the picture.
Back to the bravery part. I am not any braver than anyone else. I've been trained, I have the tools and equipment and I have a job to do....just like everyone else does. However, unlike many people, I ABSOLUTELY LOVE MY JOB. It changed my life. Before becoming a firefighter, I, Like Edie, felt like I was plodding through life. Was this it? Was this all I was supposed to do until the end of my life? I loved and adored my children but I KNEW I had to do something else.
Another gift God gave me was compassion and the ability to empathise . I have seen so many firefighters and emergency response workers who become oblivious to the fact that although we are doing what we do everyday, the people involved are probably experiencing the worst day of their entire life. After the people are safe and we know the house isn't going to collapse on us, I try to think about what I would want from my house if I knew almost everything was going to be lost. Yes we are trying to save furniture from fire, smoke and water damage. But there are other things that cannot be replaced. Many victims have told me where they keep their special boxes of photos etc and that is something that I want to be able to retrieve for them before the water and smoke destroy them. For some people it is a set of videos, or maybe a teenager's clothes, handbags, medication, a wedding portrait or anything that is important to that person. In other words, in addition to helping get victims out and helping to save their homes, I try to empathize with them. I think that the day that doesn't matter to me, is the day I need to step back and re-evaluate what I am doing.
After saying all that, there is a problem. First of all, although I dreamed of firefighting most of my life, I never thought I could do it. Therefore I didn't join our department until the summer of 2002. It was after the tragedy of 9-11 and I HAD to do something. I was 38 years old. It was hard and I was training with mostly 19-25 year old men. But I had made up my mind and nothing was going to stop me. And nothing did. I became a Virginia Certified Firefighter and EMT. It was absolutely incredible to me.
Chatty Kelly gave me support but also, using her gift of talking and teaching, tried to warn me that I should not let it become Who or What I am. It could be what I DO but not what I AM.
Did I listen to her? Yes, of course (if I hadn't listened, I wouldn't be able to tell you what she said). Did I follow her advise ...you guessed it....No.
Now I am 44 years old. I have fibromyalgia and degenerative disc problems. I've had these for years but have been able to keep doing my job, with the help of muscle relaxers, heating pads, chiropractors and the "occasional" vicoden.
I am not as healthy as I need to be, there is pain, and the time has come to step down. The only reason I haven't done it yet it that awful thing called PRIDE......not to mention I will miss it SO much. But it is time. If I continue to work in my condition, someone could get hurt. Perhaps my partner would need my help and I couldn't help him or I could be trapped and he would have to spend time helping me instead of doing what he is there to do. Perhaps the victim is calling for me and I can't move properly to get to him. The Adrenalin helps, but only so much.
People have suggested working on the ambulance or something similar. I'm not sure why, but that isn't what I am supposed to be doing.
So now I need to go back to the beginning of this post and ask again. "What specific qualities did God implant in you when he designed you? What are the things you do well, your talents, skills, passions, and things you could spend hours doing without feeling the time pass.?"
At this moment, I don't know. I'm looking. I'm trying to figure out what I am supposed to do for the rest of my life. But right this moment...I just don't know.