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The reflection » Blogging AS an Aspie
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Matt has Asperger’s Syndrome (AS), an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and is writing this blog so that people can gain more of an insight into how people with the condition process thoughts, feel emotions, react to situations and generally handle life.
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29 Aug 08 The reflection

I have a lot of regrets about “Stop”. Thinking back over the night, which at times it is hard not to, brings a tear to my eye. But I don’t know why it does so, because there are so many ups and downs to do with that one night.

I’m sure it was on my way down to the post with the team that one of the cute red bull girls told me she had lost my number and wanted it again. I think it was at that point I first noticed Steph. Against my personality, regret number one was giving my number to the red bull girl. The reason for this is that I was partially thinking about her for the next 5 minutes, and how I was going to get my number to her. I recall telling the red bull girl that I had to go, but I would give her it later – little knowing I wouldn’t see her again.

I then approached Steph (though at this point, I was unaware of her name), and asked if we could help her. She told us that this was normal for her and that after taking her medication she would be alright. I relayed this to Becca, who told me to do the refusal form. Regret number two was not trying to persuade her at this point to go to the treatment area where it would be quieter. I also regret not sitting down next to her, simply staying put and making sure she was actually ok.

When filling in the refusal form, Steph was unco-operative, and it took quite a deal of persistence to get her to sign the form. My fourth regret is actually being so persistent, as I don’t think it helped her condition. Contrarily, my fifth regret is in not using that opportunity to attempt again to persuade her into letting us treat her.

My sixth regret may well class as unavoidable – letting her out of my direct line of sight. In my defence, we were called to two shouts one after the other outside of the control building. But all the same, looking back, I’d been happier if I knew somebody had been keeping an eye, just to be sure Steph was getting better.

The next regret is in the way I approached the incident when the police called us directly over to it. I think because of the routine I’d been getting myself into all night, I went straight for the paperwork. It took Ryan to shout at me “100% o2 now, non re-breath!” to get me to even think about putting the resus bag down and getting the cylinder ready. After the incident passed, he did apologise to me, but I told him that he needn’t have apologised, it was an incident, and I wasn’t giving it my full attention.

The eighth regret comes in the way I spoke to her friends in getting Steph’s details – I was rather forceful, and quite demanding. I think I was also impolite. In my mind, I was doing this to ensure that I didn’t get met with the refusal from above. But I think, with hindsight, I could have been a damn sight more polite that I was.

I wish I hadn’t been so sharp with the police. They were doing a fantastic job, and were a brilliant help. In fact, they probably could have got a message to medical control faster than me. Even if they did ask for the ambulances, the location would have been enough for Steve to look out of the window and realise what was needed. I never had the opportunity to apologise to the officers, my tenth regret in not seeking them out to do so.

Kneeling next to Steph, and effectively forgetting her friends looking on is also regretted; I was the only medic available who could have provided some much needed reassurance. Because they were so thankful for our help, I didn’t even think to apologise for not keeping them up-to-speed with what the crew was doing.

I regret not asking somebody to site with Becca, and effectively leaving her along crying. I didn’t know why she was crying, but I should have been thinking ‘she needs to talk to somebody’. Why didn’t I?

Regret 13 is the way I spoke to Emily. I was way too harsh, and thinking solely of my team-mate. I should have stopped and looked at it from her angle, if I did, I would have been able to offer a suggestion. Instead it took my boss to appease the situation and suggest a new plan to keep the cover levels up.

Regret 14 is my thoughts as I sat down – ‘I need a red bull, why didn’t I stash one?’ The 15th regret is that my mind jumped immediately to the cute red bull girl, and the fact that she didn’t have my number. Why did I think about that? Also, I think because I thought of her immediately after the incident, I couldn’t help but notice that she wasn’t around for the rest of the time I was at the event.

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