You were standing there like a dear in headlights, staring at me crouching near the lump of a body. I was most of the way through my primary assessment and your EMT and Medic crew kicked into gear taking up positions yet to be filled.
You stood silently, about 4 feet back, eyes fixed on the skull fracture, unable to look away.
I could have yelled at you.
We could have screamed for you to suck it up and get your head out of your ass.
We didn’t because we know you needed that moment. That moment when all your schooling, training, testing and evaluation combine to offer what your proctors never could: Actual life threatening trauma.
We’ve all been there and had that moment, believe me. The same self doubt, confusion and sense of awe has raced through the mind of even the most confident provider you know (yes, even them) and shook their core.
They got over it, and so did you.
After a few moments of your Medic calling your name you let your training kick in and did a bad ass secondary assessment on a complicated patient. Your skills were evident, your soul just needed a reality check.
Oh, and it WILL happen again. When it does, take a deep breath and remember how it felt when you got down there with us and started doing everything you know how to do. Keep that feeling close.