‘I am the person who listens to you cry as you’re begging your mother to take another breath.’

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“In order to understand who I am, you must first understand what I do.

I am the person who listens to you cry as you’re begging your mother to take another breath.

I am the person who tries to get you to give your father CPR knowing he has passed, but in some way, may help you to know you did everything you could.

I am the person who walks you through the Heimlich maneuver while your child is choking on a toy.

I am the person who convinces you that life is worth living and that your family needs you here when you think all hope is gone.

I am the person who leaves my family, my home, and puts my own life in danger during snow, hurricanes and bad weather so I may be here to answer your emergency.

I am simply ‘Just A Dispatcher’ in most eyes.

To my family and friends, please understand that when I’m short tempered or impatient, it’s not you, it’s the weight of my job that may have taken a toll that day. Instead of bringing it home I choose to keep it bottled up to protect you from the reality of the world in which we live.

To my kids, please understand when I’m strict and paranoid wanting to track your every movement, it’s because I know a child didn’t make it home to their family that day.

To my mother, please forgive me for not having the patience to always sit through your entire conversation, it’s only because I’m trained to get all pertinent information within a certain amount of time. So, I don’t have the patience that I used to.

To my friends, please understand when I can’t show up for every birthday or event you may have invited me to. Or the times we aren’t able to talk on the phone to catch up, it may be because I may be working or too mentally drained to be there.

To the thousands of callers I speak to that think that I’m ‘Just a Dispatcher,’ remember that I may not be the first to arrive at your house, but I’m the first person you may speak to on possibly one of the worse days of your life.

Lynette McManus Jeter

I will leave with a quote from Dr. Seuss –  ‘To the world you may be one person; but to one person you may be the world.’”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Lynette McManus Jeter. Submit your story here, and subscribe to our best stories in our free newsletter here.

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