When I was little my Mum used to read me a book called “The Two Caroline’s”. It was about a girl who was an idyllic dream at school but a nightmare at home……maybe there was a subliminal message in there somewhere! I often feel that in my working World I am 2 different people too! My little one (amidst her very first time of sitting long enough for some semblance of face paint) reminded me this Weekend that there is a 3rd Caroline in there too!!
I am a Paramedic and I have been for 13 years. Although only returning part-time after having my little girl it’s the same thing that attracted me to the job in my early 20’s that keeps me here today………helping people! As cliched as it sounds there is an altruism about Paramedics that is common ground. Whenever I talk to others about my job I talk about the great things; meeting lovely people, delivering babies or having a successful resuscitation. I don’t often talk about the dark, black side of my job, the side that even my loved ones will never hear, or at least fully understand. It isn’t through their lack of interest or their lack of caring, it’s just that no-one else can really comprehend the emotions of a Paramedics shift, unless experienced first hand. It is not uncommon to be surrounded by blood, gore, death and heartache, and then an hour later sitting reading a bedtime story to our babies, or having dinner with our Partner or friends. This is my first Caroline!
My second Caroline is a little different! I knew that I wanted to set up Tumbles and Grumbles as soon as I had Isabella. I was overwhelmed with emotion from the first time I held her and it was almost like I wanted to be a better me! I always felt fortunate that I had knowledge and experience of Paediatric Emergency care and I wanted to help empower other Parents, Grandparents to feel the same. Being a Paramedic has helped me on my Tumbles and Grumbles journey hugely and for me, personally, I feel it keeps me current and credible to be able to give the best possible training and advice. It also affords me the privilege to be able to tailor my courses to the specific needs of the group or individuals and make them bespoke and unique depending on their situation. I truly love being able to help people in this way and to watch their confidence grow. This is my second Caroline.
I am happy to say that my 2 Caroline’s work really well together and are a good team. Isabella reminded me about my 3rd Caroline this Weekend, a Family Caroline……and it was fantastic! We were in the car on our way to a Birthday party and we heard sirens somewhere in the distance. Isabella looked at my and said;
“Nee naws coming Mam”,
I said “Yes they are. Mam works on an Ambulance new naw!”
She shook her head and said “No Mam not works on nee naws, No!”
I persisted with “I do work on Ambulances Bella, I like to help people when I am at work!”
Again, Isabella shook her head and insisted “No help people Mam…..No!”
So, intrigued to find out what it was my 2 year old thought I did, I asked;
“Bella, what do You think Mam does at work?”
With a genuinely quizzical look and 5 seconds of staring into the distance the reply came back, accompanied with a grin:
“Eat bacon Mam”‘
I couldn’t have put it better myself!!