• Michelle Partington

One small step…

Following 7 months trying to source much needed counselling I finally had my first assessment yesterday. This I have to thank The Veterans Council for because where the military system has failed me a charity organisation has come up trumps, and for which I’m extremely grateful.

I arrived for my half hour session escorted by my mother for support. When Alan appeared I warmed to him straight away but my heart was pumping so fast and I felt sickly nervous as I remembered previous sessions. Thankfully though it was purely an assessment in order for Alan to direct me onto the correct treatment pathway. I had a questionnaire to complete with responses scaled from 0 to 3, with 3 being the most severe. I was mostly at the top end of the scale for most of the questions which didn’t surprise me too much. I have not received any counselling for 7 months and have had no other outlet so I have been consumed by horrendous pent up emotions.

During the consultation I was asked about the ‘here and now’ and what I was doing work wise. Firstly I’m still being paid by the RAF until 31 March so I still have a bit of time. SSAFA are assisting in organising a therapeutic placement for me to try to get me outside again and into the ‘real world’. I am also hoping to complete certain qualifications as part of my resettlement package in order to allow me to work full time in a hospice locally.

With much regret there is no way I cannot continue to work as a paramedic due to the amount of triggers which would hinder any recovery I may make. Sat there waiting for the radio to go off and then rushing out with sirens blazing would not help me settle my already existing high anxiety state and hyper vigilance. I am also concerned about holding down a full time job due to the fact that some days it takes me all my time to get out of bed. If it wasn’t for my beautiful little doggy I don’t think I would bother some days. It takes all my concentration these days to be able to function at all!

This is why I need to force myself to begin some form of work. I think a therapeutic placement would be fantastic for me because there is no pressure on me, or the workplace because they wouldn’t need to rely on me. It is important for me to remain in the caring profession because that is where I feel I am meant to be. I want to be there to help others in any way I can especially those who have noone else to be there for them. No one should be alone especially at the end of their life.

My thoughts on wether I want to continue a job in caring profession was confirmed a couple of days ago. I was on my way back from B and Q when the traffic suddenly came to a standstill. Eventually we progressed very slowly forward and sadly a young lady had been knocked over by a van. I was a short distance away when I spotted the incident and my heart started pounding. I felt sick to the stomach and I was battling with myself about wether to offer up any help. Thankfully before I had to make that decision a paramedic response car pulled up. I really needed the traffic to move because I was becoming more and more anxious the longer we sat there.

Finally the traffic started moving again and as I slowly crawled past I noticed the girl in the road and she was clearly unconscious. What has this got to do with a job in care I hear you ask. Well it isn’t just about the patients injuries, you have to also deal with whats going on beyond them. The girl was lying on the wet road, 2 policemen were all wrapped up nice and cosy with one kneeling with the injured girl and the other just standing looking down. Next to them was a distressed young man with a baby in a carrycot. It was raining, not too heavy but also very cold. Noone thought to put their coat over the young girl who could very quickly develop hypothermia. Noone was talking to the distressed lad and the baby wasn’t wrapped up too well. Care is important for everyone in an incident and sometimes that is neglected.

What was evident during that moment was my desire to be involved in the care of people had not faded. That is all the sign I needed to motivate me into deciding on where my future may head once I’m in a steady place. There we have it peeps, a goal 😆


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