I recently had the privilege of attending CERT training at the Spokane Valley Fire Department Training Center. I made it halfway through – then disaster struck. Not CERT-ifiable disaster, but disaster nonetheless. I got sick with the creeping crud, sick to the point where I missed work. I NEVER MISS WORK. I’m that girl that shows up sick and infects the entire office, because I CAN’T STAND to admit that I’m less than well. Anyhow, I missed a CERT session that night, which in and of itself is not tragic. The next week, however, I was pulled into mandatory overtime about 30 minutes before I was supposed to go home for the day, and ended up working 11 hours. So, no CERT for 2 weeks in a row. When one misses 2 sessions, one is not allowed to graduate. This means our beloved Kat is out.
Our story, therefore, will be a little short, a little sweet, but that’s okay. Sometimes life happens and we can’t get our blog post done the way we want. We move onward and upward, do we not? I will say, I was pretty bummed last week when I realized I wouldn’t graduate. Thor, who pretty much always knows what to do, gave me a nice embrace and a glass of wine. That helped. (Side note, I like white wine, and am accepting donations. I’m very much a wine connoisseur, however; I prefer the whites that come in bottles with funky labels.)
Without further ado, I present…..
THINGS KAT LEARNED IN CERT TRAINING
1. Your tax dollars in 1987 were not wasted. I remember more of my first aid training from the military than I thought I did.
2. I’m retaining a significant amount of the firefighter exam prep that I’ve been doing all these months. Go figure.
3. I need to find out where certain people in that class live, so that in case of an emergency, I can go to their neighborhood and get taken care of.
4. I truly think that if I didn’t absolutely want to pass out cold at the THOUGHT of blood and possessed upper body strength greater than that of your average 4-year old, I would be a good first responder.
5. People with no leadership skills get on my nerves.
6. I have the book knowledge to triage at a disaster scene, but the first injured/dead child I come across, well, it’s all over at that point. I will lose it. Even READING about it upset me.
7. I love you, Fred, but if I ever end up with a broken wrist, I hope you aren’t the one to set it.
8. On the other hand, if you ever find yourself with a broken ankle, and have 2 sticks and some bandages handy, I can immobilize the hell out of your leg. Assuming, of course, I don’t pass out.
9. Firefighters/Paramedics think that some really sick stuff is funny and/or awesome.
10. I am profoundly grateful to Honeywell for their sizable cash donation to the SVFD which made the class possible.
11. I have a mindset that is suited to emergency situations. Always have, always will. And I like it.
12. I want more.
So, there you have it. I have the helmet, the backpack, the safety goggles and the CERT training book, just no diploma. (Just like college, only I don’t have to pay student loans off for 12 years.) If there is a natural disaster, and you live in my vicinity, and you don’t care that I’m not official – I’ll take care of you.