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A Paramedic's Story: Life, Death, and Everything in Between Paperback – March 2, 2010
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This book is no longer in print. For the latest edition, choose the Author's Special Edition, with additional content restored, on Amazon under the title "En Route: A Paramedic's Stories of Life, Death and Everything In Between," ISBN 13: 978-1537770819.
From the Author
This book is no longer in print. For the latest edition, choose theAuthor's Special Edition, with additional content restored, on Amazonunder the title "En Route: A Paramedic's Stories of Life, Death andEverything In Between," ISBN 13: 978-1537770819.
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Many of the stories are absolutely hilarious, either by nature or just the way they're told, but there are more serious and depressing things Grayson shares with his readers. And this makes sense - after all, EMS is not a stroll in the park. People die, and the lesson you're taught is that if you want to be a successful paramedic, you learn to appear reassuring to the patient, cry when you're not at work, and the most important thing is to not let the things you see and deal with follow you home because they will haunt you. Some of the stories he shares are downright gruesome or heart-wrenching and, after reading them, it makes you wonder how anyone could find it in their heart to get up and go back to work to do it again every day.
I know there are a lot of people who get right offended over ER staff and paramedics making jokes about people's critical or life-threatening problems, but what these people (who I can almost guarantee have never worked in emergency medicine) don't realize is that those who work in fields where they are stressed and see people die a lot have to sometimes use humor to cope. As a favorite blogger of mine (with a stressful career that she loves) once said, "I laugh to keep from crying." Same often goes for the brave folks who save your life when you're stroking out or having an MI. If every single paramedic let every single thing get to them, there would be no paramedics. They would all burn out and quit and there'd be no one to save you during an emergency. That's why I'm so glad to see this book has been so well-received - most of the readers are familiar with EMS or understand how difficult the job is.
One thing that actually surprised me is that there weren't many stories regarding drug seekers. I understand Grayson did not work IN the emergency room, but it's not all that uncommon for someone looking for their narcotic fix to call an ambulance for nondescript pain.
Mr. Grayson has an amazing way with words, and while lay people might not get some of the medical jargon, you can kind of get the general idea of what things mean just by continuing to read. Whether or not you're looking to pursue a career in EMT, I would recommend this book. Odds are, you'll be in tears at least once - either from laughter or sadness. And you'll not only hear about patients, but also Grayson's relationships with fellow paramedics, doctors and nurses in the ER (one of whom he married). You learn that sometimes it's not the patients who are the biggest pain, but your co-workers.
If I could give this book more than five stars, I would. I salute Mr. Grayson (and all paramedics) for all the crap he puts up with - the belligerent patients, the ignorant nursing home staff, the sleepless nights, the things he gives up in his own life, the calls for trivial things, the not-so-incredible salary - in order to help people, and also for taking the time to share his experiences with others. It's a job few are capable of doing.
Laugh so hard even when your not in a good mood or feeling down. Read it even if you arnt in Ems or understand the ambulance world. It will make you think about what you should call an ambulance for and what is goin through our heads when we get called a stubbed toe and your in the car on the side of the road waiting for us to come because it hurts to bad to press the gas pedal at 3am. What were you doing at 3am that you stubbed your toe and deemed it necessary to call 911 after you tried driving to the Er FOR A STUBBED TOE?!? Lol. I love this book because it explains everything we think and how we act.
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