Today, I learned something very important about myself.
I do not handle well in medical emergencies.
As many of you are aware, the northeast is currently battling what meteorologists call a "nor'easter." This is a particular type of storm that targets the northeast, usually during the winter months, and can bring rain or snow. Regardless of the precipitation, it is categorized by its severe winds. Translation: flying is a bitch! The first half hour of my flight this evening wasn't fun roller coaster bumps, it was full on severe turbulence. Not one person moved. I was beginning to feel a bit queasy, as I am new to the whole 'I fly for a living' gig. Once things started to calm down, I began to move about the cabin and the next thing I know, there's a 24 yr old girl passed out - like passed the fuck out - in the aisle! You know those movie scenes, where they show the dead bodies littered about the streets to indicate some sort of unspoken tragedy? She looked like one of them; she was literally colorless. And that just sent me over the edge. She made her way to the back galley, and was lying on the floor; there was an EMT, a nurse, and doctor aboard the flight (THANK GOD!!). They tended to her while I stayed on the phone with the captain and MedLink, which is a hospital in Phoenix that we connect to for emergencies such as this. While I was on the phone relaying info, I felt it coming. Just that feeling - its coming! So I'm holding the phone, half listening, half staring at the toilet (which isn't nearly as inviting as the pearly white one at home) and the lead flight attendant told me to go up to the flight deck. I held it together, made it to the front where the first class flight attendant had no idea what was going on. I tried to convey as much info as I could, but she called the boys and I went in ASAP. My stomach began to settle, and I definitely got to try the oxygen and let me tell you. Its amazing. For those of you with elderly or sickly family members, if you can get your hands on some O2 you simply must try it. It was fantastic. It got rid of my headache, made my tummy feel better, and forget the previously described image of customers passed out in my galley. I don't know if I would have been able to handle just the turbulence - I might have done just fine, and I have in the past. So now when I meet new flight attendants and go on future trips, I have to forewarn them that I do not handle well in medical emergencies.
Perhaps I'll be a better fire fighter.
And for all you meteorological fans out there (special thanks to Wikipedia):
A nor'easter is a macro-scale storm whose winds come from the northeast, especially in the coastal areas of the Northeastern United States and Atlantic Canada. More specifically, it describes a low pressure area whose center of rotation is just off the coast and whose leading winds in the left forward quadrant rotate onto land from the northeast. The precipitation pattern is similar to other extra tropical storms. They also can cause coastal flooding, coastal erosion and gale force winds. An example of a famous nor'easter is the Blizzard of January 1996.