Odds and Ends

It’s been a busy week for me… Well, sort of.  There’s been a lot going on, and nothing going on, and I’ve just chosen to prioritize the “a lot” and “nothing” over writing on my blog this week.  My apologies to those of you who’ve been waiting with baited breath for my particular brand of crazy.  I’ll try to do better.

Part of why it’s sometimes so difficult to write a blog post is because it’s hard to make any kind of organized sense out of what’s going on in my head, but I’ll give it a shot…

You’d laugh if you were here, because no sooner did I type that last sentence but my brain went blank and I stared at my desktop for  a good twenty seconds trying to figure out where to start.

Actually, this feels rather a lot like many of my therapy sessions.  I walk in, sit down and stare at the wall (I have a hard time with  sustained, direct eye contact – particularly during uncomfortable silences) trying to figure out what to say.  In my head it goes  something like this:

“I could talk about this subject.”

“No, I’m not ready to get into that.”

“Oh, I know!  I could talk about this subject…”

“Nah, that’s stupid and not important.”

“Well, maybe I could discuss this…”

“But we’ve talked about that already and it’s just more of the same with no real purpose.  Move on already.”

Usually, the end result is, I end up talking about one of those things anyway, because even though I fear that they’re trivial, or  repetitive or embarrassing, they are the things that are weighing on my mind so they must need talking about.

So, here goes:

I spent a lot of time this week thinking about Jesse and my reaction to seeing him again and following him on twitter and all that stuff  I talked about here and here and here.  I thought about what was behind my reaction and how to handle it.  I realized that one of the  things that attracted me to Jesse was his confidence and fearlessness.  I suppose this is what makes most Fire Fighters so attractive to people, even when they’re not that attractive.  Anyway, I realized that it’s something I aspire to be – confident, not a Fire Fighter…  necessarily.

I told Deb, my therapist, I’m tired of letting my fear and anxiety hold me back.  I’m striving to do better about that.  One of the things that Deb and I have discussed in the past is finding a coming out support group so that I can talk with other guys who are going  through similar experiences as I am…  I fantasize that I’d be the oldest guy in the room, but perhaps not… perhaps.  Ironically, coming out support groups in the San Francisco Bay Area are a lot harder than you’d think to find.  The idea of attending such a  group is vastly intimidating, but that’s all the more reason why I need to go.

Wednesday, I took a First Aid/CPR class at work.  It was an all day class so I never had to go into my office which made me happy.   This is the third time I’ve taken this class, but I always find it fascinating.  And now, I find myself wondering if I might have what it  takes to be a Paramedic?  And I’m wondering what’s really making me wonder that?  Is it that I’m fascinated by the science of it?  Is it that I really want to do something worthwhile that actually helps people?  Is it that Oakland Fire Fighters only work 8 days a month and make as much money as I do now?  Is it that Fire Fighters (and Fire Paramedics) are sexy?  And what about my previously stated desire to study kinesiology and nutrition?  I still want that too.  The thing is both of these subjects are so out of my comfort zone that I’m inclined to discount both as being whims or some sort of escapist wish.  But the fact that they’re outside my comfort zone isn’t a  good enough reason to discount them.  If anything, it’s probably good reason to look further at them.  Staying in my comfort zone hasn’t exactly accomplished much for me.

The truth is, even as I’m thinking these things, I’m also finding myself thinking, “There’s got to be a way to combine the two, right?  Somehow?”  I have to assume there is not.  How do you combine being a Personal Trainer with being a Paramedic?  Personal Trainers have to be CPR certified but other than that, I don’t see how to meld the two.

There’s something else, though.  When I was younger, I used to have issues with the sight (or idea) of blood.  More so, imaginary  blood (as in, on television or movies), but on more than one occasion I passed out because of it.  I now know, that it was anxiety (I  learned that in class on Wednesday) caused by me thinking too much about what the bleeding person was experiencing.  It has been a long time since I’ve had an issue, but it was a problem for awhile.  I’ve always felt that if faced with the real deal I’d be fine and I still  believe that, but how wise would it be to go to school to become a paramedic just to find out I can’t stomach it?

Also, Fire Paramedics make more money than Ambulance Paramedics do and work fewer hours, but they have to also be trained Fire Fighters and who’s to say that I’ve got that in me.  But that 8 days a month thing sounds really nice. They’re 24 hour days, but still…

I’m still trying to work it all out, and as much as I hate it, this has been a good lesson in patience for me.  I’m really interested in the  kinesiology and nutrition idea, but I’m also really interested in the Paramedic idea and I’m not really sure which direction to go, or  whether to rule either one out.  What I do know is, I’m tired of being unhappy and unfulfilled and I’ve decided to take control of my life and my time.  I have to be patient.  It’s just not going to be possible to jump into what I want to be doing, but I’m ready to make a move and I’ll do what I can when I can.  I’m suddenly reminded of the lyrics to a really great country song that relates to this.

I’ve got some other big things in the works, but this seems like a good place to stop for now.  This song is called Getting There (Sorry, no video this time) and it’s by Terri Clark:


Well the sun sets in the west
But as fast as you go, how would you know
You’re a busy boy, I guess
Who just wants the gold at the end of the road
Think of all you miss
Passing through like this

You want an answer as soon as you say a prayer
You want to land the moment you’re in the air
Baby the living is all in the getting there

Don’t be the first in every line
Now and then you can be at the end
‘Cause there’s only so much time
And you can’t get back every minute you spend
You’re not even sure
What you’re running for

You want an answer as soon as you say a prayer
You want to land the moment you’re in the air
Baby the living is all in the getting there

Think of all you miss
Passing through like this

You want an answer as soon as you say a prayer
You want to land the moment you’re in the air
Baby the living is all in the getting there

The living is all in the getting there
Getting there



3 thoughts on “Odds and Ends

  1. I often thought about being a paramedic. But now I find myself automaticly saying I am to old to start the training.
    What I would really like to do is help the elderly but I come back to the problem of caring to much. I become attached incredibly quickly and let’s face it the elderly have the potential to die more often then lets say children. So wanting and doing are two different things. I won’t be helping them the way I want to.
    I even thought about volunteering for dropping off meals for the elderly but again the whole dying thing makes me depressed and I haven’t even done it yet. So no. Sigh.
    I am surprised that there are not more groups out there. This has to be an issue for more people then just you. And for some reason I seriously doubt you would be the oldest. I imagine that there are a lot of older people who were brain washed into being “straight” who are now coming into their own. Realizing that they aren’t weird or evil or disqusting for what they feel inside their hearts. Realizing that they were just mentally taught to believe that. So no… I don’t think you will be the oldest.

  2. For me at least, age and the time it will take to get the training is less of an issue than knowing how to pay for it and live while I’m learning.
    This is not to say that age hasn’t entered my mind. I am after all 34 years old and I don’t know that people get hired for these jobs at my age, let alone 36 or 38 years old, depending on how much time it takes to get the education. On the other hand, if I just start the process, I might find out about other opportunities in the same “genre” utilizing the new training I’ll have acquired.

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