Self-Made EMT

Most of you know that my mom is pretty much the best mom ever. I’ve talked about her a good deal on this old blog and she frequently comments with things that probably only make sense to me and probably make you think she’s a little batty. Which she is, but in a good way. Anyway, maybe you were wondering about why I never talk about my dad, and the only reason I can come up with is because he is too strange a dude to write about. No, really. Just looking around their house I spied a book on raising poultry, one on how to pick mushrooms, the New Hampshire guide to deep sea fishing, a tide chart, and some kind of diagram detailing how to tell if the ground is a level plane from inside a backhoe. So basically, nothing at all that would indicate that we are biologically related.

Still, he’s my padre, and occasionally we realize that we have the same twisted sense of humor*. Also occasionally, I enjoy helping him with home improvement projects. So the other day he asked me to mow the lawn, something I have never done in my thirty years of life, and he would edge everything with the weed whacker. Sure, I can do that! No problem! I got going, and really, mowing is not so bad. There’s something soothing in creating all those symmetrical lines. So I’m mowing, and mowing, and suddenly I look around and see the weed whacker on the ground and my dad is nowhere in sight. I didn’t think much of it, maybe he went to get some water or something. I guess it’s not like him to leave the weed whacker in the middle of the driveway, but whatever…

When I finally finished mowing, sweaty and covered in grass, he still had not come back. I stomped into the house to find him lying sprawled out on the couch. I yelled at him for being lazy and hanging out in the air conditioned house while I was outside sweating my ass off and then I really looked at him. Dudes, he was gray and clammy and wheezing and I FREAKED THE HELL OUT. He squeezed out that something had stung him and he had tried to flag me down but I didn’t see him so he came in to see if he could relax. Relax! My dad was in anaphylactic shock and he came inside to have a relaxing little lie down without telling me. AND THEN I YELLED AT HIM. Awesome Daughter Award, coming right up.

At that point I ran around and around trying to find his epipen and trying desperately to remember what our school nurse had told us about administering them. The padre refused to let me call an ambulance (he didn’t want to “inconvenience anyone”) and so I finally found his epipen (on top of the refrigerator- worst place ever) and handed it to him while hustling him into the car. As soon as we started driving I was talking him through the steps of the epipen and he just kept sitting there, holding it in his hand. It was frustrating, and I probably yelled at him a little more, and finally I pulled the car over and took the epipen from him because I was worried it was getting too late.

I now know what it is like to stab someone in the thigh with a giant needle. It is gross, and there is a lot of blood. Thank the stars I had a pile of napkins in the car because oh my goodness, so much blood. On the bright side, four years of working in a school prepared me for that moment so I didn’t even freak out, I just continued on to the hospital where they took him immediately to a room before the hordes of other people that were sitting waiting with emergencies of their own. Two IVs, some benadryl, some pure oxygen, and an hour long nap later and we were on our way home, my dad decidedly not dead.

NPW for the win! Maybe I should have been a nurse? I could have been Florence Nightingale Wannabe! Ugh, never mind, even the idea of cleaning out bedpans makes me want to vomit.

So that was my Friday night. How was yours?

*I also took a picture of my dad hooked up to the oxygen and the million little electrodes in the hospital and texted it to my sister with the message “having fun, wish you were here”. Both my dad and I thought that was hilarious. My sister, not so much. Like I said, twisted.

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25 Responses to Self-Made EMT

  1. Poppy says:


    I was reading so intently and then you said GIANT NEEDLE and BLOOD. holycrapdude

    My Friday night sucked, thanks for asking. Glad your padre is alive.

  2. Jess says:

    OMG that is so SCARY. I saw your tweet about this but I didn’t realize you were talking about YOUR DAD. And I can’t believe he just went in for a little rest! OMG scary. I’m glad he’s OK!

  3. Aaron says:

    Well, that explains your FB update on Friday. Way to keep it together; NPW for the win, indeed! (Glad your dad is a-ok.)

  4. courtney says:

    Gah! Glad Nurse NPW was there to help the old padre with the giant needle. I have to say I sympathize with your sister, but after the initial shock wore off, I would think that was pretty funny too.

  5. Lisa says:

    OMG! I can’t believe this story! You saved your dad!!!!!

  6. Janssen says:

    Wow, you are awesome! I will remember to pay attention to the school nurse next week.

  7. Mumsie Lou says:

    hero…..people she was awesome…she handled the whole situation like a pro!!!!! So watch out school nurse NPW is on her way.

  8. Jules says:

    Yikes Girl!!!! That’s just a WEEEEEEE bit crazy! Glad he’s ok though!

  9. flurrious says:

    How scary! I’m glad your dad is okay.

  10. Noelle says:

    That’s an awesome story, but for the blood and the fact that your dad almost died. I had no idea that epipens caused so much blood. They seemed like such a happy little DIY medicine administration system.

  11. Yikes! That sounds scary, but I’m glad you handled it so swimmingly.

    My dad fell off a ladder and broke his back and simply went in the house to rest too. In a strange turn of events (long story) a police officer called the house and could tell something was wrong with him and sent an officer out to check on him. Due to the pain meds they put him on, he kept flashing me with his, uhm, package and his very white ass. Good times. Six months later he fell down the front porch steps and sliced his eyelid open. He sat in the house bleeding for 9 hours until my mom got home from work. She took him to the ER and he received 17 stitches in his eyelid. But he didn’t see any need to call anyone or go to the hospital on his own. What the hell is wrong with our fathers?

    I’m glad your dad is okay and that you were there to take care of him.

  12. Bing says:

    Man, that must have been scary. Glad your dad’s doing OK!

  13. Marie says:

    WOW AND OMG. SO glad your dad is ok!

  14. DM says:

    When I read this on FB, the urgency was conveyed but the hilariousness of it was not. I do not get the “Oh, you couldn’t see me so I just thought I’d go lay down” attitude but then, I freak out at paper cuts so that might be why.

    I guess I always thought epipens would be like my insulin pen, really thin needle and no blood. Apparently I was wrong. Thank goodness you can’t go into anaphlatic shock from mold, I would NOT deal well with this. I am so impressed with you!

    My dad and I shared the same sense of humor most of the time. We would have texted the same picture to my sister who would not have been amused at all.

  15. Allie says:

    Texted pic = awesome. And so are you! WOW! That is so amazing. Not surprising, because I think you are kind of on the superhero side of things to begin with, but absolutely awesome.

  16. 3carnations says:

    I’m so glad he’s okay.

    I demanded an epipen when I had a near anaphylactic reaction to one of my injections 2 years ago. 2 years later, no more reactions. I’m glad to have the pen anyway.

  17. Kristabella says:

    Wow! That is amazing! So glad you were there to help him! And that he’s doing fine! SCARY!

  18. Kim says:

    Oh my god! This was quite the story. I’m glad your dad is doing better now. I probably would have yelled at him too, not knowing what’s going on.

  19. Dingo says:

    Did you at least lean your head out the window and make the ambulance siren sound? I would’ve.

    I’m glad your dad is okay. That’s some scary stuff right there.

  20. Holy shit. I am so glad he’s OK… and so impressed that you knew what to do and actually DID IT. The biggest medical emergency I’ve ever dealt with is when I stepped on a nail, and let me tell you: I did not react well.

    I’m also impressed that you have an epipen in your house. Guess I should stop stockpiling food an invest in some medical supplies?

  21. lizgwiz says:

    Is he going to put the epipen in his pocket before he goes out to do lawn work from now on?!

    I find it amusing that I’m not shocked at all that you handled the situation so competently, but I’m freakin’ AMAZED you’ve never mowed a lawn. Heh.

  22. Oh NPW, don’t feel bad. I turned 41 this past week and I’ve yet to mow any grass.

  23. Lex says:

    oh yes people, the pic texted to me was AWESOME, while sitting around enjoying LAKE LIFE with my wine, I get that pic texted to me with NO further explanation! Ok I think my heart stopped beating and had to call her and she was laughing…???!!! How is that funny to do to someone?!

  24. stefanie says:

    Oh my word! I cannot believe I did not read this until now. I mean, yes, I was on vacation for a week and am still behind, but still! I should have popped over for the full story when I saw it on Facebook! Anyway, yikes. You are totally a hero, NPW. And I’m glad your dad is OK.

  25. blakspring says:

    wow, you’re amazing. i don’t even know what epipen is, never mind how to administer it. glad everything turned out well. all i kept picturing is that scene in pulp fiction with the adrenaline shot.

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