27 March 2006

First Aid Weekend

I was indeed home yesterday, but I was too tired to update my blog. This weekend was a really heavy weekend. It was a sort of ‘refreshment’-weekend in which my bf and I were retrained in First Aid to keep our diplomas valid. We have had our First Aid diplomas since November 2004. Since then we have never refreshed our knowledge, because there were 2 weekends last year and we couldn’t make it to either of them. So this was our first weekend.
I was really not looking forward to it from the beginning. I don’t like camping, I don’t like spending time with a lot of people and I’m very unsure about my own First-Aid capabilities.
The first day, Saturday, wasn’t too bad. In the train we met two other people who were going to this weekend and so my bf talked a little with them. When we arrived, after almost 3 hours of travelling, we first did some stupid introduction game to get to know each other. After that we had to form groups and we had to question and talk to about 10 victims in total. We didn’t have to treat them, just talk to them to find out what they have and make them feel at ease. This assignment was meant to practise how to handle a victim, what do you say to them, how you say it, what can you say and what can’t you say, stuff like that. It was a useful exercise. We also did some other exercises that afternoon, also with the new resuscitation-protocol. They have made it a lot easier and we can now skip some steps which we did learn for our exams. That evening we had a very heavy exercise. Oh, I forgot to tell you that there were 36 participants in the weekend, so we split in several smaller groups all the time. This time we were with about 5/6 people. We had to enter this room which was completely dark. Two people were yelling and screaming inside. “My leg hurts, my leg hurts, come help me, my leg, my leg, etc” “Where my boyfriend, what has happened, where is everyone, help, help!” Imagine how I felt when I entered the room. When I first entered I almost stumbled over someone lying on the floor, so I helped him. He was lying on the floor and had a wound on his head. I just kept touching him (on his arm) to let him know I was still there, I found some gauze to put on his head and I removed the crate that was under his leg to make it more comfortable for him. I think I did a pretty good job there. The only big mistake that I made was that I didn’t remove him so that I pretty much blocked the way for everyone else.
Later that night I played some game with dices with some other people, and I did have some fun, although I hadn’t expected to. That was nice.
The night there was awful. We slept in one big room with about 30 people. Everyone was walking in and out, the door squeaked, and I just couldn’t sleep. I was way too uneasy and tired and ‘busy in my head’ to lie down and sleep. I have lain awoke for all the night. I have only slept for about 2 hours or something. I was totally spent the next day.
We just fooled around with some bandages and general exercises the night day. We also practised doing mouth-to-mouth resuscitation with a Kiss-of-Life and with a special mask, both meant to protect the First Aid person. And then, after lunch, it was my turn to do the next big exercise. My bf wouldn’t tell me what it was about, and I had seen others come back from it, looking a bit depressed, so I was kind of dreading this exercise. And it turned out to be my worst nightmare come true.
We were with 4 people there to help the victims. They had made it look like a car-accident. I tried to reach the person on the back seat of the van, but I couldn’t reach him. I tried to assess him from where I was, but I was unable to. I got to the other side of the van, I helped to take the passenger from the front seat, but I still couldn’t get the chair to move, so I couldn’t get to my victim. The instructor told me to get back to the initial side of the car, where I could get to my victim somewhat, and while walking there, I just broke down. I started to cry. The instructor asked me if I was all right, and I just kept on crying. I hated it, but I couldn’t help myself. I felt so tired and useless, and I felt bad that we were just like clueless what to do. The instructor stopped the training because I broke down, and he comforted me and others comforted me, which I hated even more. I hated it that I was the one who broke down and who caused the training to stop, and then everyone is looking at me and trying to comfort me and touch me. I thought: Just don’t, just leave me. But of course they couldn’t. So the instructor told us what we did right in the training. He told us that it wasn’t weird that someone broke down and he said that that’s what the training is for. I walked back to the house, some girl went in to get my boyfriend, and when he was there I just cried even more and harder. My bf was really great to me and comforted me really well, and eventually he got me so that I was calm again. The instructor came to talk with us for a moment and he invited me to the refreshing-weekend of coming November. Now that they know I have this problem, they will try to help me with it (Just great, I thought). The same staff as last weekend will be there, so at least I know them and they know me. And I will go there. I have to, because if I don’t, I’ll never do any First Aid in my life ever again. I’m even seriously considering going to help as a First-Aid assistant on a camp-like-thing in May. I already mailed the girl who asked me to come for some more information. So that was my weekend.
I must say that I did learn a lot this weekend. I know that I do some things intuitively right. I did refresh my memory of some of the necessary parts of the First Aid program, but I also learned that I can’t handle that much pressure when I am already stressed and tired, and I think I should have switched patients or asked some assistance when I felt that I couldn’t handle it.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Profile for charda