Hopeful - Jemsite
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: austin, texas
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Hello ladies and gents, I've been a member of Jemsite for a number of years now. I've never been a well known member here, but I've made a few friends over the years. This has been a good place to visit. To summarize recent events, my wife has been concerned for my mental health(not in a psychosis kind of way) of late. I'm not complaining, but working as a 9-11 dispatcher is easily the most stressful occupation I've held. She noticed that since taking the job I've become cynical. That I'm anxious and aloof. That I've become desensitized-even cold. She's right.

I hate it that she's right. It's challenging to listen to people hold their child while it's dying, trying to calm them down enough to talk them through cpr. I hate that it makes me think of my own son at those moments and I have to fight to stay emotionally detached or break down myself. I hate going to cop funerals-I lost a friend in the line of duty this past year. The worst part is shutting people out so they don't feel burdened. I know it's nothing compared to what soldiers or cops go through, but it's hard nonetheless.

This is all part of what brings me back to Jemsite and the guitar in general. My wife basically told me that it's hard to see me feel like I have to endure and give up on the thing I'm passionate about. The thing that was always my "happy place". She understood that I was just doing what I thought responsible-grow up and move on-but it wasn't fair that she was pursuing her dream of being a pastry chef(currently going to Le Cordon Bleu and doing so well!), while I had nothing. So here I am again, saving up the cash to get a respectable rig and practicing/studying for school. Anyway, I'm trying to practice opening up, this is my baby step.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 02:09 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Re: Hopeful

Wow, I have been enlightened today.
I never took the time to think about the people and their emotions on the other end of a 911 call. I say you have made a giant leap in realizing/admitting that there is a problem and taking the steps to fix it. My hat is off to you sir.
I wish you all the best, and welcome back to your "happy place"!
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 03:37 PM
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Re: Hopeful

Very nice to see you back again Tex. I don't know if this helps or not, But I firmly believe that the way we affect other peoples lives is what defines who we are. Our jobs, homes, cars...... etc. are NOT what defines us.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 04:16 PM
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Re: Hopeful

Sounds like you've had a tough time. Hope everything works out okay but you will make this happen if you keep positive.

You'll get a good rig built up in no time if you put your mind to it.

Ibanez = win = Good happiness stuff.

Best of luck to you!!!
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 09:57 AM
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Re: Hopeful

Glad you're back, or, on your road to being back. It's hard to get to another state of mind once something has formed you into something else. But, if you are involved in something you love, such as guitars, it won't take too long. I recently found / lost myself in my studio again and it's been great! Just being submerged in the element is so much fun. Would be even more fun if I had a couple other people with me, but oh well. Enjoy your music! On a side note, your job is tough and it's only normal to go through what you're going through. I had a couple friends work dispatch and I saw the change in them as well...not bad, just different. It's hard to have a "normal" outlook on life when you see the bad sides of life most of the time. You're doing a great job though man.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: austin, texas
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Re: Hopeful

Thanks to all who've reached out with encouragement. I really do appreciate it guys.

How are things? I remember you were having a pretty stressful time a while back, I hope things are better for you. BTW, you may find it amusing that my son found the video you sent out a few years back. I come downstairs and find him watching it on the computer, "Daddy, what is this? It's awesome! Is there some more?"
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 12:00 PM
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Re: Hopeful

I am glad you let me know...I really do find that amusing! Very flattering that someone likes something I did, and to even ask for more! wow. I wonder what video he was watching? Tell him thank you and yes, there is something else I am working on, with even more to come. Basically, since I'm not getting many photo or video clients, I decided to focus on personal projects. I have recorded a pretty cool rhythm thing with no leads yet, which I want to shoot with 3 cams (3 angles), as I record the 3rd rhythm track. Just a cool little thing with me in the studio I guess. Hope to do that soon...maybe this weekend. Just an excuse to shoot and edit something.

As to how things are going, well, there have been so many bullets to dodge, along with a lot of thin ice to tread...at home, at work, etc. I've received my PHD in BS dodging probably a couple years ago. Everything is pretty much the same....less peaks and valleys, just steeper ones. Things are alright man, thanks for asking. If people are cool to me everything is fine...I am the laid back one. It's been hard trying to get to music again because of everything. Motivation is rough especially with being gone 12 hours a day with work (4 hour daily commute) but I'm glad to have a job. Yeah man, there seem to be more deaths and divorces and things...and all I want is a german shepherd for myself, but the wife says no. So the battle continues. hehe. I'll post a link when that vid (and others) are done.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 12:34 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: austin, texas
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Re: Hopeful

I can't recall the name of the particular song, but it was a video you mailed out to some of us Jemsiters...6 years ago? Maybe more..lol. You were switching between an acoustic, a PGM and a Jem for the song if I recall.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 01:39 PM
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Re: Hopeful

You know, it would probably be good for you to see someone once in a while. There is a reason why all psychiatrists see psychiatrists. Good to see you though
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 01:54 PM
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Re: Hopeful

Tex, good to see you hear. You are fortunate to have a considerate & concerned wife who is tuned in to you. As we age and our responsibilities change and outlook changes from child to adult we all need to adapt. Hopefully you can find a balance and keep a positive perspective. If that means with the assistance of a trained professional then all the better. Best regards...glen
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 05:35 PM
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Re: Hopeful

Like the service men and women that protect our interests overseas and who are largely unseen by folks back home, we've also got to spare a thought for the guys like you texshred, who unseen and largely unrecognized, look after us at home.

Day in day out, you do a hard job, one that many couldn't actually stomach at all, so thank you!

Getting help from a professional is a common thing in this day and age and is far better than climbing inside a bottle or finding some other destructive outlet. Guitar is a therapist that you can call on on your schedule, but don't overlook finding a counsellor to talk to, sometimes that's all it takes. It's worked for me in the past
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 12:47 AM
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Re: Hopeful

Hey neighbor,
I have relatives/friends who are doctors, nurses, police, military... and they all seem to go through the same things whether they realize it or not. It's part of survival. You couldn't do your job if you weren't detached. Of course, I see the problems that come with that...

Good to see you're working toward getting some new noise making equipment.

And, even though I hardly know you, I've seen you on this forum long enough to say - if you ever want to grab a beer, shoot me a PM or something. Haven't met a jemsiter in person for quite some time.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-31-2010, 01:06 AM
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Re: Hopeful

Hey Tex -

I think you're underestimating the amount of stress that goes with your job. More often than not, you're the first one at the scene, irrespective of whether you're actually on site or not, and you'll be the one dealing with the initial hysteria. I would imagine emergency despatchers suffer from a high level of burnout and PTSD?

There's nothing wrong with a little professional help, and getting on with something completely unrelated outside working hours is going to help as well. Good luck with it.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-31-2010, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: austin, texas
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Re: Hopeful

Thanks again to all who've reached out with the encouragement. Seeing a professional is something I've definately thought about. Especially of late.

You're very right, drugs and alcoholism are all too common for people in my position.

It's common for dispatchers to go through a very high rate of burnout. Vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue are extremely common. Especially if the dispatcher has their own past trauma(and who doesn't). Incidents we're confronted with can bring those issues to the surface again.

Hey, I appreciate that. What part of town are you at?
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