I think as you get older time takes on a different quality. It used to be blocked for us by school and summer, now we work, we have kids, we have a significant other, and perhaps we are still going to school. So time just blends together and morphs into this continuous progression of days. Then you look back and half the year is gone, yet you don't even remember what you did for New Year's Eve. Where to start then?
Maybe the past year isn't worth thinking about though. Nothing good really happened. I'd say a month of last year was good. The rest is meh. I'm trying to do a highlight reel in my head, unfortunately my memory has never been the best.
The part that really stands out is California and Kerry. Now that was fun. I'd even go as far to say the best vacation I ever had. Even after waking up sick the day before take-off, then missing my flight, then feeling gross and tired after flying...seeing him again made me not care one bit about what it took to get out there. Meeting Marge and Trista was such a treat, they are fabulous women for sure. Hopefully on the next trip I can see them again. Once this degree is accomplished there will be some serious moving considerations going on as well. You'd think I'd get sick of Cali after 4 trips in a couple years, but the opposite happens. I love it more and more each time. We shall see.
Let's not forget the opposite coast. My Tracey and Sam...and New York! What a town. Miles of sprawling city, a lit up grid of history. I don't think I've ever used so many means of transport in one week. Plane, cab, subway, bus, walking... and the food! I'll never eat lamb shank again, nothing can beat that birthday meal. It doesn't hurt that I had fabulous hosts. The most warm and friendly couple on the planet. Yet another place I cannot wait to venture back to.
This certainly has been the year to meet people. And who would I love to party with again? Chrissa. That girl is frickin awesome in every way. Not only did I get to meet Here We Go Magic because of her, but I also got to have breakfast with them (and makeout with the guitarist). Shhh! I see summer trips to Michigan in my future.
The summer session starts next Monday, smack dab on my 27th birthday. Three nights a week, four hours a pop, for ten weeks. At then end of it, I hope to hold my EMT certification high in the air for all to see. I won't lie, I'm nervous as hell. Shakin in my boots even. Not only do I have to learn how to keep people alive to the best of my skills and ability every time I go out on a run, I have to learn how to mentally take care of them. How to hold my compassion tight to my chest and not let the burnout slip in. Because it would be a monstrous shame to go to school for 4 years only to throw in the towel after the next 4. It happens though. You see enough death and abuse, hear enough lies and whining, it'll get to you. Eat at your soul until you don't see a patient, you see a chore. Then you're done until you can get your mind right. Or you move on.
Lately I think about what I'm up against more and more. I look at myself, wondering how in the heck I've not ended up in an ambulance yet with all the moronic decisions that have been made in the past. Will I end up somewhere busy? Scary? Boring? Will my coworkers be friendly? Will they be good mentors? I think my ultimate fear is being presented that golden moment where my actions can save or kill someone...and doing the wrong thing. Coping is part of the job to be sure. How do you cope with killing someone, albeit on accident?
Next week I start volunteering for Harbor Light Hospice. I think it will be a good way to development my patient care skills and get used to initiating a rapport with someone who is sick or injured. Plus, hospice is a wonderful service. End of life care is severely underrated and managed in this country. We do so much to extend life as far as possible, but there are points where you have to say enough and let nature take course. My grandfather, rest his soul, was dying of colon cancer and entered hospice when I was 18. Though his stay was brief, it truly helped my family get through that time and cope the best we could. Perhaps this is a way for me to give back a little.
So the future, what will it hold? Who knows, but I do know that right now, life is good. Every day that I wake up is good. Every single breath I take is good. I pity those who cannot appreciate it. It took me a long while to realize that life is short, that I'm not immortal. Once you come to grips with the fact you will die someday everything tastes a little sweeter, no?