Needless to say, I got accepted.
Once the lazy, uninterested kid at school, this was different. I dived in to the study. I would be in the library until they kicked me out for closing times. I would relisten to whole podcast lectures, write them out, just to understand and learn the material. I would organise group learning sessions, because I best learn in a group (pure selfish tactic really, but it’s a great social and educational tool too!). I dedicated most of my life that year to my first year of study. And it paid off, achieving highest marks, but more importantly, I knew that I had found something what I want to do, my vocation, my calling.
What followed from there on…well, I don’t really need to write it all down again – because that is when I started this blog.
More than five years have passed since I started as a Student Paramedic, and it is coming up to two years since I graduated as a Paramedic. Nearly a year ago now I gained my UK Paramedic Registration after making the decision to move to London, England. And ten years since I first set foot in an ambulance, which set off a series of events, more than I had ever anticipated.
A big “Thank You!” to everyone who has been, is, and will be on my journey!
I returned from my visit with the rekindled desire to join the ambulance service. The camaraderie amongst the staff had impressed me, and together with my memories of time spent on shift made me rush to the phone and enquire about recruitment. Nine months. Nine whole months! At least that woudl give me time to prepare and think it through. But there was nothing to think through, I wanted to become a Paramedic in Australia.
Work was becoming boring, and I had been offered a place at university in Western Australia, so I moved again. Studying computer science was a backup plan, to be continued until I either graduated, or got accepted in to the ambulance service. The more I studied computer science, the more I loathed it. Maths was just not working out, and programming jsut didn’t make sense. It was boring me to tears. I tried to put the long hours in, but my brain would just not cope with the input and could not make any sense to it. By that stage, applications had opened up for the position of Student Paramedic. So instead of studying for my current (failing) degree, I skipped some lectures and instead attended some free “how to ace an interview” courses. I slowly progressed through the application process, preparing meticulously for every stage (I researched nearly every possible interview question there has been in the universe, and laboured over the best answer, wrote them down, and practiced speaking my answers by recording myself on my webcam).
There was only one way of not having to take that stupid maths unit again next semester, and that was to be accepted as a Student Paramedic.
Today, three years ago, I commenced my first shift as a student paramedic.
I remember being keen.
I remember the excitement.
I remember having all the theory, but close to zero practice.
I remember the slow and clunky first steps.
I remember sucking up all the knowledge I could lay my hands and eyes upon (and then the confusion who to believe)
But most importantly, I remember my first partner, my tutor, my mentor. The paramedic who supported me, guided me, pushed me when needed, instilled me with confidence and taught me what a great profession we are in.
I write these lines on the day of my leather anniversary as a career paramedic, a reminder to myself of my beginnings as a new student, the spikes and troughs of confidence, the confusion, the hard work, the ecstasy, the rewards.
What a great journey.