Swift | Silent | Deadly

2021 Goal Progress – August

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In January of 2021 I committed to some New Year’s resolutions: spend 15 minutes per day learning Spanish, workout 3 times per week, shoot my bow 3 times per week, read 73 books, and stay off tobacco. This is my progress so far in the year.

January, February, March, April, May, June, July

August 2021

August was the worst month this year for goal progress. This month was an emotional roller-coaster. On the downside, I lost two friends this month. The first was a 42-year old, retired special operator, who died from COVID. The other, a 38-year old, current special operator, was lost to suicide. There was also a natural disaster in my area that caused me to work some fairly stressful overtime. Work was also very challenging with most of my shifts being filled with nearly back-to-back-to-back calls. I had a lot of “high acuity” patients this month. August was a tough one.

There were also some unalloyed happy moments, too. I found out I’m going to start teaching basic EMT classes, and I’m being offered a full-time, day-shift position at my EMS agency. Secondly, my girlfriend and I had two big events. The first was a party where we invited a bunch of out-of-town friends. It was a blast to see people we haven’t seen for years in some cases. Second, we went out of town for a night for a change of scenery. This was also exceedingly pleasant considering our lack of travel over the past couple years.

I managed to lose a lot of my routine this month. Ironically this was probably the month in which I needed it the most. I think I found the limits of what is realistic this month. With my excuses out of the way, let’s look at what I did manage to do.

Week 1: August 1 – 7

My biggest disappointment this week was missing a day of Spanish. I got to work, we had a call before the truck was even checked off, and stayed running all day. I worked some long, hard shifts and some very critical patients this week.

Week 2: August 8 – 14

Same this week – some all-nighters, one of which resulted in me forgetting to do Spanish.

Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.

~Robert Collier

Week 3: August 15 – 21

Missing two days of Spanish was supremely frustrating. I would get home from work at around 7:30, be discussing the night with my girlfriend and realize, “oh shit! I forgot Spanish!” Is what it is, but it sucks to go from one missed day all year to five, four of which were this month.

Week 4: August 22 – 28

Getting back on the wagon. This week I began a swiftwater rescue class. Since my girlfriend and I have decided to hike the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, we’ve decided to do part of it by kayak. I think this is a pretty important class to take prior to committing a lot of time to kayaking. I am taking the class through my SAR team, and will be a member of our swiftwater team, as well. Long story short, I was one of the top two or three swimmers in the class, but it destroyed me. I need to find a way to get in the water more.

Wrap Up

Good news, though! I have been offered a full time position at my agency. It is on a day shift. I’ll work 12-hour shifts (7AM to 7PM). I’ll work three days one week and 4 the next. No middle-of-the-night calls. No ruined sleep. Hopefully, I’ll stay generally less run down from work.That should start October first. I’ll do what I can to make things better in September, and we’ll see what happens!

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