Photo by Malte Lu on

The last few years have been rough. There is no getting around that.

I still miss my past life as an EMT. I had a love and passion for that job that I can’t explain. I loved the adrenaline rush when the tones would drop. I loved that I could make a difference in somebody else’s life. I loved it, until I didn’t.

I loved it until the tones sounding caused my stomach to go into knots, fearing what we were getting called out to next. The love turned into fear that pierced me.

When my mental health became so affected by the job that I was forced out due to health reasons, it felt like I had a limb amputated. A big part of my life was gone. I wasn’t making a difference anymore. I stopped living, and started surviving.

Not being on ambulance anymore hurt, and not being able to go back was excruciating. I tried going back, but I continued to fall apart. I couldn’t do the job.

I struggled with my mental health for a long time after leaving the ambulance. The funny thing is, my biggest fear wasn’t that I would lose my battle with depression and take my own life, it was that with my passion gone I would just fade into purposeless obscurity, nothing but a footnote in the history of the ambulance service.

Too many hours sitting in therapist’s offices and in group work later, and things have changed. Despite still struggling with my mental health issues, I have found a purpose again. It’s a purpose that I never could have predicted.

I didn’t set out to write a blog, or write for my paper. I knew barely more than zero when it came to photography.

I ended up on this path when it was recommended in one of my groups that I start writing my feelings out. I tried it, and the spark from that act put me on the path I’m on.

Over time, that spark grew, growing into a new passion. Yes, I still struggle occasionally. It’s part of dealing with the couple of significant mental illnesses I’ve been diagnosed with. It’s part of my life.

It blows my mind how acting on one simple suggestion, writing my feelings out, has blossomed into a new passion. if I hadn’t acted one that suggestion, I never would have started my blog, which got me my position with the paper, which got me into photography.

The take away is this; if you are struggling right now, keep going. If you are struggling with your purpose in life, keep going. If you are struggling with finding your passion, keep looking. You never know what random spark will re-ignite your fire.


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